The second hay cutting is lower yielding, but higher in nutritional value than the first. Knowing this can help cattle producers decide on a feeding program and supplement strategy for their herds for the next year.
Farmers started the second cutting late after a cool, wet spring delayed the first hay harvest. But favorable weather conditions with adequate moisture and sunny days during the second growing period mean forages should be high in the nutrients that cattle need if harvested at the correct stage of maturity. This high-quality hay can give producers an option, in addition to supplemental feeds, to offset poorer-quality hay from the first cutting.
“First cutting is going to be lower in energy, protein and digestibility than normal,” said Ron Lemenager, Purdue Extension beef specialist. “That means that when that’s fed to a given class of cattle, performance won’t be as good as you would typically expect out of first cutting.… Continue readingRead More »