Potential for Controlled Traffic Farming (CTF) in grass silage production: agronomics, system design and economics
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Grassland silage management is generally ad hoc resulting in soil compaction damage. Literature suggests grass yield reductions of 5 to 74% through compaction (UK mean 13%), while a 2015 study, reported here, comparing grass dry matter (DM) yield between controlled traffic farming (CTF) and normal management (N), found a 13.5% (0.80 t ha−1) increase for CTF. Commercially available grass forage equipment with widths of 3 to 12 m set up for CTF reduced trafficked areas from 80%–90% for N to 40%–13%. Economic analysis based on 13% increase in DM for 2 and 3 cut systems, gave an increased grass value between £38 ha−1 and £98 ha−1. CTF for multi-cut grass silage effectively increases yields by reducing compaction and sward damage.
Other Titles/Title of Conference
11th European Conference on Precision Agriculture, Edinburgh, UK
Advances in Animal Biosciences
Copyright © The Animal Consortium 2017. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Cambridge University Press in a revised form with their editorial input. The final published version is available online: https://doi.org/10.1017/S2040470017000747.