In order to determine the effects on feed intake and milk performance of different grassland conservation methods, a three-year feeding experiment (20112013) was carried out at the HBLFA Raumberg-Gumpenstein. In this experiment the conservation methods field curing, air ventilation, dehumidification drying, and silage making were compared. The experimental forage for all groups was harvested from 11 ha of a homogeneous permanent natural grassland. The design of the experiment followed a Latin square design using 4 groups and 4 periods in quadruplicate (n = 16 animals). The forage was provided ad libitum and consisted of one of the 4 conserved components only. The level of concentrate fed was based on milk yield and stage of lactation and on average amounted to 20% of dry matter intake. The results clearly show that the method of forage conservation significantly influenced its nutrient content. The intake of forage was significantly influenced by the method of conservation. The forage dry matter intake was highest with cold-air ventilation and dehumidification drying, followed by field drying, which also resulted in higher dry matter intake compared to ensiling. According to the considerable differences in nutrient content and dry matter intake, milk yield of groups fed hay was also significantly higher than that of the silage variant. The highest milk yield was achieved in the group fed hay dried with dehumidified air followed by hay from cold-air ventilation. The fat and protein content was also significantly different between the silage and the hay variants. Feeding of silage resulted in a higher milk fat content, but on the other hand the protein content was lower. The calculated milk yield from forage was significantly higher in groups fed hay from cold-air ventilation and dehumidification drying. Compared to ensiling and field drying, indoor-drying systems like cold-air ventilation or dehumidification drying lead to higher nutrient concentration, higher forage intake and higher milk yield.