Western hay prices, innovative forage equipment, forage-testing suggestions, spider mites and what it takes to produce quality forage.

All those subjects will be discussed in a few short hours on Feb. 12 during the Forage Seminars at World Ag Expo, Tulare, CA.

The seminars, hosted by Mycogen Seeds and Hay & Forage Grower, will begin at 10 a.m. with a half-hour of hay price predictions from Seth Hoyt, Western market analyst and author of the weekly The Hoyt Report.

A panel of equipment manufacturing representatives will present what’s new in their areas of expertise for the next hour.

Dean Morrell, Agco Corporation’s hay and forage product marketing manager, will speak on the company’s combine-baler combination for harvesting grain and biomass in one pass.

Matt Dobberstein, sales and marketing manager for Dinamica Generale-US Inc., will present the Portable NIR Forage Analyzer for accurately testing forages in the field.

John Kastl, product manager for equipment with Valley Irrigation, will show how DropSpan irrigation equipment allows center-pivot outer spans to “drop” and expand the number of acres irrigated.

Lane Blount of Humdinger Equipment will introduce the Orkel MP 2000 Compactor, a stationary unit that packages corn silage and other bulky products into plastic-wrapped round bales to preserve quality.

The afternoon program starts at 1:30 p.m. with an overview of the entries in the 2013 World Ag Expo Forage Challenge by Dan Putnam, University of California Extension forage specialist. He’ll reveal trends and insights that can make anyone a forage quality winner and tell how quality forages are measured and what it takes to produce them.

Two dairy nutritionists will give advice on which forage tests are most important for formulating rations, what to expect from a forage-testing lab and what sampling and testing techniques deliver the most accurate results.

Speakers will include: Doug DeGroff, Diversified Dairy Solutions, LLC and Jed Asmus, January Innovation, Inc.

At 3:30 p.m., Carol Frate will examine how spider mites can cut corn silage yields.

Frate, a University of California Extension farm advisor, will tell how to recognize the signs of spider-mite infestation and how to prevent and control these pesky insects.