Friday, August 2, 2013

Forage Sorghum Highly Nutritious

by Jeff Semler

The results are in. I received the forage analysis on our sorghum that is planted in the paddocks of the goat test.

Forage sorghum before grazing on July 12

The sample was taken in the paddock where our goats were grazing on Thursday, July 18, and I sampled at the height I observed the goats grazing so I would be sampling the same parts of the plant that the goats were consuming. This is not a whole plant sample similar to what would be taken for mechanical harvest or cattle grazing.

The sorghum was 26.9% dry matter, testing 18.4% crude protein and 66.8 TDN. A pretty good forage by the numbers. I have put together a table of some common feedstuffs for comparison below.

Click HERE to view more detailed table.

I cannot recommend enough the importance of regular sampling of your forages. It should be as much a part of your management plan as soil sampling, weighing,  and FAMACHA© scoring. Remember a simple key in animal husbandry; you cannot manage what you do not measure.

So what does all this mean with regard to feeding goats. Below is a table that shows what the nutrient requirements of meat goats.

As you can see our sorghum more than meets the needs of the growing bucks However, the proof will be in the growth as measured on our next weigh day, August 8th so check back and find out how the goats grew.

Boer buck grazing sorghum grass.