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2020

Celebrating 40 Years of Research and Impact at the U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center
Dr. Dennis Hancock, Sept. 30, 2020

In the early 1970s, there was a major need for research on more “modern” forage production and dairy nutrition practices. After several discussions among and between the North Central Land Grant Universities, Congress directed USDA to report on dairy forage research needs in 1974 and National and Regional Dairy Forage Task Forces were appointed. In response in 1975, the National Dairy Forage Task Force recommended the establishment of a research center in the North Central U.S. and the North Central Experiment Station Directors met to unanimously voice their support for such a center. Congress authorized a plan for a North Central Dairy Forage Research Center and appropriated $1.1 million for planning in FY1978. The NCDFRC Planning Committee planned to have “cluster locations” associated with 7 ag experiment stations in the upper Midwest and NE USA. In the following budget year, Congress authorized and appropriated $9 million to construct the farm and campus facilities at Prairie du Sac and Madison, respectively. Construction completed in 1980 and 1981, respectively, and scientists were hired during 1979-81. In January 1979, USDA-ARS decided to call it the U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center (USDFRC). In the 40 years hence there have been over 3000 publications and contributions to over 40 reference books. Key scientific contributions include a better understanding of fiber and protein digestibility, revisions on nutrient requirements used for ration balancing, reductions were made in how much protein and phosphorus was needed by dairy animals, better assessment methods and metrics for forage quality, improvements in silage making and inoculation, numerous new varieties of various forage crops, developing strategies to reduce methane emissions and increase carbon sequestration on the farm, better management practices were developed to minimize nutrient loss and to increase the capture of those nutrients with cover crops and living mulches, and a better understanding of dairy’s contribution to contaminants in the environment. New endeavors seek to investigate the interactions between the animal and microbe, support the development of a holistic dairy model, develop cover crop strategies, and assess risks to environment and public health.

 

Why Inoculate Silage?
Dr. Kevin Panke-Buisse, Sept. 30, 2020

Inoculating a forage crop with specific bacteria prior to ensiling can boost the population of desirable species, which may result in better fermentation, aerobic stability, and animal performance. The inoculant industry has grown to the point that the number and diversity of inoculant products available can be overwhelming. This presentation summarizes inoculant types and benefits as well as provides guidance on what types, if any, might be helpful in preserving corn silage.


2019

Alfalfa Interseeding in Corn Silage
John Grabber, Oct. 2019
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center
World Dairy Expo Seminar

How We Make Dairy-Quality Hay and Baleage
Don Hasselquist, Oct. 2019
World Dairy Expo Seminar

Incorporation of Cereal-Grain Forages into Rations for Lactating Cows
Gonzalo Ferreira, Oct. 2019
Department of Dairy Science - Virginia Tech
World Dairy Expo Seminar


 

World Dairy Expo 2018

Madison, WI - October 2-6, 2018

 

World without Livestock
Mary Beth Hall, Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center

Dairy Nutrition
Kenneth Kalscheur, Research Animal Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center

Energy & Protein
Geoffrey Zanton, Research Animal Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center

Strategies to Reduce Feed Costs on the Dairy
Mike Hutjens, Professor Emeritus
University of Illinois

On-farm Feed and Forage Management for a 44,000-Pound Herd
Tom Kestell, Ever-Green-View Farms, and Steve Woodford, Nutrition Professionals, Inc

Corn Silage for Dairy: Past present and a Look to the Future
Randy Shaver, Professor
University of Wisconsin - Madison

New Insights on Alfalfa - Grass Mixtures for Dairy
Jerry Cherney, Professor
Cornell University

Corn Silage Mycotoxins
Phil Cardoso, Assistant Professor
University of Illinois

Seeing the Total Financial Picture of the Dairy Puzzle, of Which Forage is One of the Pieces
Gary Sipiorski, Dairy Development Manager
Vita Plus, Inc.

 


 

World Dairy Expo 2017

Madison, WI - October 3-7, 2017

Cereal Grain Forages: Providing Nutrient Management Options and Dairy Forage
Wayne Coblentz, Research Agronomist and Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Marshfield, WI

Cereal Grain Forages: Points to Consider When Adding Them to Dairy Cattle Diets
Matt Akins, Assistant Scientist
Marshfield Agricultural Research Station, University of Wisconsin

How Do Advances in Corn Breeding Improve the Corn for Silage?
Natalia de Leon, Professor of Agronomy
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Bunker and Pile Safety: Get Your Wake-Up Call Today
Keith Bolsen, Professor Emeritus
Kansas State University

Undigested Fiber in Forages: What Does It Mean to a Dairy Cow?
David Combs, Professor of Dairy Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Reducing Leaf Loss during Alfalfa Harvest
Dan Undersander, Forage Extension Specialist
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 


 

Tri-State Dairy Nutrition Conference
Fort Wayne, IN – April 19, 2017

Sugars in Dairy Cattle Rations
Mary Beth Hall, Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center

 


 

World Dairy Expo 2016
Madison, WI – October 4 - 8, 2016

Invisible losses from corn silage piles and bunkers: Real “shrink” losses
Peter Robinson, Extension Dairy Nutrition and Management Specialist
University of California, Davis, CA

"It" doesn't just happen: What manure evaluation can tell us about cows and rations
Mary Beth Hall, Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Madison, WI

Feeding reduced lignin alfalfa: How do we achieve the most from this new technology?
David Weakley, Director of Dairy Forage Nutrition Research
Forage Genetics International, Gray Summit, MO

What to look for when feeding this year's forage
John Goeser, Animal Nutrition Director
Rock River Laboratory, Watertown, WI

Selecting, establishing, and managing cover crops after corn silage
Heidi Johnson, Crops and Soils Agent
University of Wisconsin Extension, Dane County

Forage quality for high producing dairy herds: Key performance indicators
Randy Shaver, Extension Dairy Nutritionist
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Is it better for forages to be more digestible or to digest more quickly?
David Combs, Professor of Dairy Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 


 

World Dairy Expo 2015

Madison, WI - September 29 - October 3, 2015

How much forage can we feed to dairy cows?
Kenneth Kalscheur, Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Madison, WI

Managing fermentation with baled silage 
Wayne Coblentz, Agronomist/Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Marshfield, WI

Cows agree with total tract NDFD
David Combs, Professor of Dairy Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Forage systems for warm season dairying
Dennis Hancock, Forage Extension Specialist
University of Georgia, Athens, GA

Making or breaking rations with forage digestibility and quality
Mary Beth Hall, Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Madison, WI

The secret life of rumen microbes
Paul Weimer, Research Microbiologist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Madison, WI

Managing reduced-lignin alfalfa 
Dan Undersander, Professor of Agronomy
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 


World Dairy Expo 2014

Madison, WI - September 30 - October 4, 2014

Making quality baleage with annual forages
Mike McCormick
Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, Franklinton, LA

Using propionic acid to preserve more hay 
Wayne Coblentz
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Marshfield, WI

Undigested NDF and updates to NDF digestibility: New tools in forage anlaysis
Mike Van Amburgh
Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Make sure your kernel processor is doing its job
Kevin Shinners and Brian Luck
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Redesigning alfalfa for improved protein utilization: PPO and o-diphenols vs. tannins
John Grabber
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Madison, WI

Manure on forage crops: Benefits and challenges
Bill Jokela
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, Madison, WI

Do higher seeding rates improve alfalfa stand persistence and yield? 
Dan Undersander
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 


World Dairy Expo 2013

Madison, WI - October 1-5, 2013

Differences in making alfalfa and grass silage
Dan Undersander, Research and Extension Agronomist
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Reducing heat damage in hay and haylage
Dan Undersander, Research and Extension Agronomist
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Using forage fiber analyses to get the most from your cows
Rick Grant, President
William H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute

Have you kept pace with improved forage testing options?
Neal Martin, recently retired Center Director
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, USDA-ARS

Plastic covers and silage density: What's new and basic in making good silage?
Richard Muck, Agricultural Engineer
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, USDA-ARS

Using propionic acid to preserve more hay
Wayne Coblentz, Research Dairy Scientist/Agronomist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, USDA-ARS

Corn silage yield drivers and profit robbers
Joe Lauer, Extension Agronomist
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 


World Dairy Expo 2012

Madison, WI - October 2-6, 2012

How low can you go with protein in dairy cattle diets?
Glen Broderick, Research Dairy Scientist
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, USDA-ARS

Corn silage quality varies from field to field
Joe Lauer, Professor of Agronomy
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Silage inoculants seem to affect animal performance as well as crop fermentation
Richard Muck, Agricultural Engineer
U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, USDA-ARS

The economics of feeding dairy cattle with high-priced forage and grain
Steve Woodford, Dairy Nutrition Consultant
Nutrition Professionals

Using plant analysis to diagnose alfalfa nutrient needs
Carrie Laboski, Associate Professor and Extension Soil Scientist
University of Wisconsin-Madison

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