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Effects of oilseed meal and grain-urea supplements fed infrequently on digestion in sheep: 1. Low quality grass hay diets

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Dixon, R. M., Hosking, B. J. and Egan, A. R. (2003) Effects of oilseed meal and grain-urea supplements fed infrequently on digestion in sheep: 1. Low quality grass hay diets. Animal Feed Science and Technology, 110 (1). pp. 75-94. ISSN 0377-8401


Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0377-8401(03)00204-9

Publisher URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0377840103002049


An experiment examined intake, growth response and rumen digestion of young sheep fed ad libitum low quality grass hay alone or supplemented with approximately isonitrogenous amounts of barley grain and urea (Bar/N), safflower meal (SAF) or linseed meal (LIN) provided at 3 days intervals. Supplements comprised 13–20% of total DM intake. Sheep fed grass hay alone consumed 60.2gDM/kgLW0.75/day of hay and an estimated 6.09MJ metabolizable energy (ME)/day, and were in liveweight (LW) maintenance. Hay intake was decreased (P<0.05) by the Bar/N supplement with a substitution rate of 0.9, but was not changed by the oilseed meal supplements. Each of the supplements increased (P<0.05) estimated ME intake to a similar extent, but LW gain and wool growth were lower (P<0.05) in sheep supplemented with Bar/N than those supplemented with LIN. Rumen degradabilities of the SAF and LIN CP were estimated to be 0.72 and 0.62, respectively. Rumen ammonia concentrations in sheep fed hay alone (average 97mgNH3/l) were expected to be adequate for microbial activity. Fractional outflow rate (FOR) of liquid from the rumen measured with Co-EDTA (mean 0.109h−1) was greater than that of Cr-mordanted supplements (mean 0.056h−1), which was in turn greater than the FOR of Cr-mordanted hay (mean 0.031h−1). Diet did not affect these FOR. Supplemented sheep accommodated increased DM intake on Day 1 of the 3 day supplementation cycle by increasing rumen digesta load rather than by increasing rate of passage of digesta. Results show that the LW gain of young sheep fed low quality hay was increased more by either oilseed meal than by equivalent amounts of barley grain/urea supplement, apparently due to more efficient utilization of ME for LW gain.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Animal Science
Additional Information:#
Keywords:Digesta passage Metabolizable energy Growth Wool Three-day supplementation
Live Archive:06 Jul 2022 00:31
Last Modified:06 Jul 2022 00:31

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