Course code LauZ2048

Credit points 2

Fodder Production

Total Hours in Course80

Number of hours for lectures16

Number of hours for seminars and practical classes16

Independent study hours48

Date of course confirmation09.04.2019

Responsible UnitInstitute of Soil and Plant Science

Course developer

author Augsnes un augu zinātņu institūts

Dzidra Kreišmane

Dr. agr.

Prior knowledge

Biol1001, Botany

Biol3014, Plant Physiology I

LauZ2040, Soils and Fertilizers

LauZ2044, Basics in Field Cultivation

LauZ4031, Mechanisation of Agriculture

Course abstract

Forage production is a system of agrotechnical measures and management with the aim to produce forage in the fields, meadows and grassland to meet the physiological needs of livestock for nutrients in summer and winter. A thorough knowledge of biological properties and growth characteristics of field crops and herbage are significant in the choice of proper forage grass production technologies and in preparation of top quality feed. Breeding of grass species, their suitability to high and quality yield performance in different locations of Latvia are discussed in the course. Considerations of breeding species and families of diverse plants in forage production, the timing of harvests, the primary treatment and storage of the harvested crop are included in the course. Production costs, differences in crop plant chemical composition, and feeding value are included for economic evaluation of diverse crop plants.

Learning outcomes and their assessment

Knowledge of the economic and biological properties of perennial grasses, the use of grasses to provide quality fodder, grass fodder preparation technologies and perennial grass seed cultivation. Knowledge is confirmed by 4 successfully passed tests.
Skills to know and describe the species of perennial grasses used for the preparation of grass fodder, to compile grass mixtures, to choose the most suitable fodder preparation technology for the specific conditions, to assess their economic justification. Students learn the economic and biological properties of perennial grasses, the characteristics of grass and legume species, learn to recognize grass species and their seeds and compile grass mixtures. Students are able to calculate the need of feed for a specific group of animals according to the feed ration. Skills are confirmed by successful completion of tasks performed in practical works.

Students are competent to evaluate the quality of grass fodder, agronomically and economically evaluate the adequacy of fodder preparation technologies. In practical works students evaluates the installation technologies of sowing grasslands for mowing and grazing, they are able to assess the quality of fodder, knows the technology of grass seed production and are able to assess the yield and quality of seeds.

Course Content(Calendar)

1. Biological properties of meadow and pasture grasses. Lecture 1 h.
2. Biologically ecological and economic description of the most widespread grass species in meadows and pastures. Practical work 3 h
Test 1 – economic and biological characteristics of perennial grasses and species of legumes
3. Impact of ecological factors on the growth and development of herbage. Lecture 1 h.
4. Herbaceous seed properties. Practical work 2 h
5. Compiling grass mixtures and calculation of precision rate. Lecture 1 h and practical work 1 h
6. Compiling pasture forage balance and green conveyer. Lecture 1 h and practical work 1 h
7. Calculation of grass forage needs for different livestock groups. Practical work 3 h
8. Establishment of sown grasslands. Lecture 2 h.
9. Care and use of cultivated grasslands, establishment and maintenance costs. Practical work 2 h
Test 2 – technologies for installation of cultivated grasslands for mowing and grazing.
10. Organization of pasture area, division into paddocks, drafting of grazing plan. Lecture 2 h.
11. Calculation of pasture establishment and maintenance costs. Practical work - seminar 2 h
12. Haymaking technology, hay quality, analysis of costs. Lecture 2 h.
13. Preparation technology of silage and haylage. Lecture 2 h.
14. Quality of silage and haylage, evaluation of their preparation technology, costs for preserved grass. Practical work 2 h
Test 3 – grass feed preparation technology
15. Growing and preparation of papilionaceous plants for seeds, analysis and arguments for seed prices. Lecture 2 h.
16. Growing and preparation of forage grasses for seeds, analysis and arguments for seed prices. Lecture 2h.

Test 4 – grass seed growing technologies.

Requirements for awarding credit points

The counting task shall consist of:
 four tests on the theoretical substance of the study course;
 four practical tasks on topics learned during the course;
 presentation of the results of practical work in a group of students.
Tests, practical work and the report must be credited for receiving an accumulating rating.
If desired, students can take a test to receive a higher grade.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

Presentation on the need for grass feed for different groups of farm animals and its provision.
Literature studies, preparation and presentation of results of practical works.

Group work during practice.

Preparing for tests.

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

The evaluation of the study course final test depends on the cumulative evaluation of the study course tests and presentations.
Practical works must be carried out in accordance with the instructions; assessment — credited/uncredited

All tests and works must be successfully completed.

Compulsory reading

1. Adamovičs A. (2017). Zālāju ierīkošana un izmantošana. Jelgava, 136. lpp.
2. Adamovičs A., Kreišmane D., Narvils M. (1998.) Zālāju ierīkošana un izmantošana zemnieku saimniecībās. Ozolnieki: LLKC. 40 lpp.
3. Augkopība (2004.) A. Ružas red. Jelgava: LLU. 283. – 331. lpp.
4. Ceļvedis daudzgadīgo zālaugu sēklaudzēšanā (2008.) B. Jansones red. B. Jansone, S. Rancāne, V. Dzenis, A. Jansons. Skrīveri: LLU Zemkopības zinātniskais institūts. 264 lpp.

5. David Blakesley, Peter Buckley (2016). Grassland Restoration and Management (Conservation Handbooks) 1st Edition, Kindle Edition. Pelagic Publishing [Tiešsaiste][skatīts 22.07.2019] Pieejams:

Further reading

1. Freimanis P., Holms I., Lauva J. (1982.) Lopbarības ražošana tīrumos. Rīga: Zvaigzne. 305 lpp.
2. Kultivētās ganības (1977.) J. Vaivars. Rīga: Liesma. 140 lpp.
3. Labu ganību iekopšana (2000.) Antonijs A., u.c. SIA Latvijas šķirnes sēklas. 59 lpp.
4. Osītis U. (1998). Barības līdzekļu novērtēšana atgremotāju ēdināšanā. LLKC, 102 lpp.

5. Pankovs J., Ivanovs S., Viesturs D. (2004). Zāles lopbarības sagatavošanas tehnoloģijas un mašīnas. LLU, 125 lpp.

Periodicals and other sources

1. Interneta resursi un periodiskie lauksaimniecības izdevumi: žurnāls Agrotops, u.c.
2. Saimnieks LV. Rīga: TEE BIO, 2004- ISSN 1691-1598.
3. „Grassland Science in Europe”. the proceedings appear as successive volumes in the EGF series. All papers of EGF conferences are peer reviewed, edited and published as hard cover since 1996. [Tiešsaiste][skatīts 22.07.2019] Pieejams:
4. “Grass and Forage Science” is the official journal of EGF, in co-operation with the British Grassland Society. More information can be found at:


Compulsory course for study program Professional Bachelor of Agricultural Sciences, qualification Manager of Agricultural Enterprise for full-time and part-time students in semester 6.