Start Date

30-11-1995 12:00 AM

Description

When first introduced into the United States, soybean was used predominately as a summer annual forage legume. Soybean is still consider a viable alternative when supply becomes limiting and additional forage is needed. During the past few years, many forage producers have experienced difficulty establishing alfalfa because of excessively wet or dry springs. Additionally, some loss of established stands has occurred through winter kill. Failure of spring seedings or loss of established stands is usually not apparent until sometime into the growing season. Because of their later planting date than alfalfa, summer annual crops fill an important role in the forage supply of the Midwest. Additionally, the high energy content in soybean lipids (oil) increases the energy density of the forage, which can be of value for supplying the energy needs of high producing ruminants such as lactating dairy cows. In this article, we discuss yield and forage-quality relationships of soybean and point out its potential as feed for ruminant livestock. Because soybean has not been used much for forage recently, such information is limited. First we will make a few introductory comments about forage quality.

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Nov 30th, 12:00 AM

Production and Quality Characteristics of Forage Soybeans for Livestock Feed

When first introduced into the United States, soybean was used predominately as a summer annual forage legume. Soybean is still consider a viable alternative when supply becomes limiting and additional forage is needed. During the past few years, many forage producers have experienced difficulty establishing alfalfa because of excessively wet or dry springs. Additionally, some loss of established stands has occurred through winter kill. Failure of spring seedings or loss of established stands is usually not apparent until sometime into the growing season. Because of their later planting date than alfalfa, summer annual crops fill an important role in the forage supply of the Midwest. Additionally, the high energy content in soybean lipids (oil) increases the energy density of the forage, which can be of value for supplying the energy needs of high producing ruminants such as lactating dairy cows. In this article, we discuss yield and forage-quality relationships of soybean and point out its potential as feed for ruminant livestock. Because soybean has not been used much for forage recently, such information is limited. First we will make a few introductory comments about forage quality.