THE SILAGE CLAMP
Silage is grass pickled in its own juice. This is done by packing it tightly together and sealing out the air.
There are 2 ways of doing this :
Either by big bales ( the large round/square ones you can just see in the lefthand photograph covered in plastic) or in a "clamp".
Our clamp measures 10m by 27m by 3m and when full will hold about 650 tonnes.
It has walls made from girders and railway sleepers and has a sealed concrete base.
After the grass has been cut and put in it is sealed by covering it with a plastic sheet weighed down by old car tyres.
Any excess juice that may leak out during this process is called effluent.
This is collected in a 20,000 litre tank to be spread to be spread on the fields for careful disposal as it can be a powerful pollutant.