Solution for more realistic cow feeding with TMR

Paddock
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:59 pm

Solution for more realistic cow feeding with TMR

Post by Paddock » Sun Mar 18, 2018 9:15 pm

Hi!

For a long time I have been thinking why animal diets both vanilla or modded Farming Simulator are pretty much "off" from what they use to look like in real life. Let's think - for example - cow feeding in dairy farm. In real life 60 % of diet's dry matter might come from crops or crop-based animal foods, 40 % from silage. And there is a clear reason for a diet like this in real life: a dairy cow needs high energy intake to lactate properly. Especially during lactation peak silage is just not enough. And even beef cattle are usually given crop based foods and again there is a good reason to do so: to get them fat.

So, I have been wondering why on earth in Farming Simulator players are encouraged to mix even low energy straw in TMR - and why on earth we are not able to feed our cows with crops along with silage. Maybe someone has understood something very wrong maybe a long time go...

BUT: I did a simple test today. I edited Keenan mixer wagon by CDModelz to accept barley. Then loaded the mixer with silage and barley. That worked out fine without any problems at all. Mixer did it's job as well as always and game itself doesn't matter what you have put in the mixer if the output is right i.e. TMR.

Just wanted to share this with all of you. Let's get rid of straw - and let's feed our cows as they are in real life. And modders, ahoy... maybe it's the time to update your mixers?

Corstaad
Posts: 130
Joined: Wed Jan 17, 2018 3:14 am

Re: Solution for more realistic cow feeding with TMR

Post by Corstaad » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:55 am

They use zero grazing diet which is lacking in particle length. You use straw to buffer rumen mats. Rumen mats help digest every nutrient possible. Its foreign to western dairy practices outside of very large dairies that truck in a lot of feedstuffs. It boils down to European fields lacking concentration and favorable weather to grow grass almost year round.

Procobator
Posts: 80
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:39 pm

Re: Solution for more realistic cow feeding with TMR

Post by Procobator » Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:13 pm

I found in my experiences using straw is a great rumen buffer as noted above. Without enough buffer in the cows diets I find that the incidences of displaced abomasums go up significantly.

I don't think that the addition of straw to the Tmr is inconsistent in the way a lot of farmers mix it IRL

DirectCedar
Posts: 185
Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:47 am

Re: Solution for more realistic cow feeding with TMR

Post by DirectCedar » Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:53 pm

Procobator wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:13 pm
I found in my experiences using straw is a great rumen buffer as noted above. Without enough buffer in the cows diets I find that the incidences of displaced abomasums go up significantly.

I don't think that the addition of straw to the Tmr is inconsistent in the way a lot of farmers mix it IRL
I follow and agree with what you and Corstaadt are observing.

I'm confused though why the game's version of TMR (consisting of hay, straw, and silage) is required in addition to hay and/or silage on its own, when like the OP points out there is still no concentrated starch or protein added from a grain source (either to the TMR or to the diet at all). Why wouldn't the TMR contain something different or additional to the same base diet ingredients already fed on their own? Otherwise it's missing the T from TMR :smileynew:

Yes yes I know it's just a game and if the reasoning is simply to justify more fun machinery driving required to feed cows that's fine, but the simulation still seems redundant and a little confusing.

Where I come from dairy cows are fed barley or corn silage and a grain concentrate pretty much year round, additionally to grazing on grass in the summer and dry hay in the winter. 30 years ago when silage was less common they were fed dry alfalfa or alfalfa-blend hay plus mineralized barley chop. To me that seems like a complete diet.

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