Feedyards spend considerable time and expense putting up silage. And William Kautz, director of technical services and product development at Chr. Hansen BioSystems, says producers should manage the product carefully during feedout to protect its quality.

Over 50 percent of silage dry-matter losses occur during storage and feedout, Dr. Kautz says. The greatest losses occur along the face of the pile due to exposure to oxygen. If possible, he says, feed a minimum of 6 inches from the entire face every day. Carefully shave or chip the material working from the bottom to the top, keeping the face as clean and strong as possible. Remove only enough silage for one day's feeding. Loose material left at the base of the pile will spoil rapidly.