By KELLY HECKAMAN
Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Purdue Extension Kosciusko County
WARSAW — If you’ve got forages, then you will want to join Purdue Extension at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 23, at 202 West Main St., Warsaw, to find out exactly how good your forages are.
2015 certainly provided less-than-ideal conditions for growing outstanding forages. Maybe you were one of the lucky ones and got hay made during one of the early opportunities this year. Whatever your case may be, this is the year to have your hay or forages tested. It is very important to know exactly what you are feeding to your livestock and if you are meeting their nutrition requirements.
So, on Nov. 23, we will learn the importance of testing your forages for their nutritional value and how to utilize the results to feed your livestock this winter. We will take a look at different forage samples and compare them with actual test results. Although many of us think we are experts at just looking at hay or forages and knowing the quality, tests tell us the true story.
During the program, we will discuss the proper ways to take forage samples for testing. Different styles of hay probes will be available. We will use test results from hay samples to learn first how to read them and what all those numbers mean. After we understand the numbers, the results will be utilized to make feeding decisions for your animals this winter and spring. You don’t always have to be a nutritionist to understand and utilize this important information.
To assist with the program, I am looking for some volunteers who are interested in receiving a free hay test. If you are one of the first six people to respond to me about this offer, I will pay for your hay test. However, in order to get the free hay test, you will have to generate the sample and drop off at the Extension office. I do have a hay probe here if you need one. I really would like to have all samples by Tuesday, Nov. 10. I will also need for you to be in attendance on Nov. 23 and to have a slab of the hay available for the program.
There is no charge to attend the program but attendance is needed to make sure the appropriate handouts are available. If you are planning to attend this session, please RSVP by calling Purdue Extension Kosciusko County at (574) 372-2340 or by email to Kelly Heckaman at [email protected] by Monday, Nov. 16. The program flyer is available at this link under current topics.