Development of dehydrated silage for export and domestic forage markets


The shortage of land for forage production for ruminants in many countries (e.g., Japan, Korea and China) makes the unit cost of most forages greater than that of grains. As a result, there is an increasing international forage market. Silages are not utilized to any significant extent beyond the farm gate as the transportation costs of wet silage are too high and aerobic exposure results in spoilage. The development of a modern forage dehydration process to economically produce dehydrated silage has changed this scenario; but, there is a need to develop an optimal dehydration procedure that is able to maintain the high nutritional value of the initial silage. The first 2 years of the study will define the optimal barley and corn silage initial moisture level, chop length and final dry matter (DM) content for the dehydration process based on the energy costs of the process and final chemical composition and nutritional quality of the dehydrated silage. In the third year a growing feedlot beef cattle study will be conducted to compare the nutritional value of barley and corn dehydrated silages with two different final DM contents to the control silages using the optimal chop length.


Dr Alex Chaves

Research Location

School of Life and Environmental Sciences

Program Type



The research findings from this project will provide the primary sector with new information on the potential sustainable use of dehydrated silage for livestock production and the resulting impact of feeding it on ruminal ecology and fermentation when using this new conserved feed.  

Additional Information

Opportunity to travel overseas (Canada) and work with a multidisciplinary team.
Research facilities provided for this project are breath-taking. Lethbridge Research Centre is the centre for excellence in beef research in Canada and it is located 1.5h from the Rocky Mountains.

Additional supervisor: Professor Tim McAllister (Canada)

HDR Inherent Requirements In addition to the academic requirements set out in the Science Postgraduate Handbook, you may be required to satisfy a number of inherent requirements to complete this degree. Example of inherent requirement may include:
- Confidential disclosure and registration of a disability that may hinder your performance in your degree;
- Confidential disclosure of a pre-existing or current medical condition that may hinder your performance in your degree (e.g. heart disease, pace-maker, significant immune suppression, diabetes, vertigo, etc.);
- Ability to perform independently and/or with minimal supervision;
- Ability to undertake certain physical tasks (e.g. heavy lifting);
- Ability to undertake observatory, sensory and communication tasks;
- Ability to spend time at remote sites (e.g. One Tree Island, Narrabri and Camden);
- Ability to work in confined spaces or at heights;
- Ability to operate heavy machinery (e.g. farming equipment);
- Hold or acquire an Australian driver’s licence; - Hold a current scuba diving licence; - Hold a current Working with Children Check; - Meet initial and ongoing immunisation requirements (e.g. Q-Fever, Vaccinia virus, Hepatitis, etc.)
You must consult with your nominated supervisor regarding any identified inherent requirements before completing your application.

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animal nutrition, greenhouse gases, fermentation characteristics

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 2295

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