Testing your silage for mold and mycotoxins is critical for the health of your herd. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln suggests testing your forage for nutrition content, but using additional testing for silage to detect the presence of mold. Silage that is grown in stressful conditions or put up in less-than-ideal storage can be susceptible to mold, decreasing its energy value, feed intake and cattle performance value.

Some molds can produce mycotoxins that can impact animal production and health. High mycotoxin levels can be found even with low mold counts, but not all mycotoxins can be detected. If storage mold is found, then the feed-out rate is even more important. Producers should aim to remove at least six inches per day off the face, with 12 inches being ideal when feeding your herd.

Read more on mold and mycotoxin testing your silage here.