Behavioral, nutritional, and toxicological responses of cattle to ensiled leafy spurge.
Yearling cattle (n = 25; 416.1 +/- 25.9 kg) were stratified by weight and gender across five groups. Group 1 (OAT) was offered oat/rape haylage (ORH) for ad libitum consumption during two daily feeding periods. Group 2 (SPURGE) was offered leafy spurge/grass haylage (LSGH) for ad libitum consumption during the same feeding periods. Group 3 was offered ORH in an amount equal to the average amount of LSGH consumed by SPURGE at the previous feeding. Group 4 (MIX) was offered LSGH mixed with ORH for ad libitum consumption during the two feeding periods. Group 5 (PAIR) received the equivalent amount of ORH consumed by MIX at the previous feeding. The DMI for OAT, SPURGE, and MIX were similar at the first feeding (P = .52). The SPURGE group consumed very little LSGH thereafter and was removed from the trial. The OAT and MIX groups consumed similar amounts of DM daily on d 1 to 4 when the ration offered to MIX was only 7% LSGH (P = .33). When LSGH made up > or = 21% of the mixture (d 7 to 32), the OAT group consumed more daily DM than did MIX (P < .05). The spurge/oatlage ration offered to MIX was less digestible than the oatlage-only ration offered to PAIR (P < or = .01). Even though blood chemistry did not indicate that LSGH consumption caused organ damage, its intake caused minor alterations (P < or = .05) in serum albumin, calcium, gamma glutamyltransferase, P, K, and urea nitrogen. No gross or microscopic lesions, infectious agents, or significant numbers of parasites were detected in any of the carcasses or tissues examined. The MIX group had diarrhea for much of the trial. In Trial 2, five yearling cattle were adapted to a mixture of 21% LSGH and 79% ORH. Then they were simultaneously offered three mixtures of spurge and oat haylages: 1) spurge ensiled with a microbial inoculant (LSGH); 2) spurge ensiled with the same inoculant and a cellulolytic/hemicellulolytic enzyme (ENZ); and 3) spurge ensiled with the same inoculant and molasses (MOL). The mixture with ENZ was preferred over those with MOL or LSGH (P < .001), but the amounts consumed were low and similar to those for LSGH-ORH in Trial 1 when amounts of ENZ and LSGH in the mixtures were similar. The ENZ mixture may have been more palatable than LSGH and MOL because it had less (P < .05) lactic acid, but intake of ENZ indicates that it had aversive characteristics, like LSGH. Ensiling leafy spurge did little, if anything, to improve its palatability to cattle. (+info)
Effect of reconstituting field-dried and early-harvested sorghum grain on the ensiling characteristics of the grain and on growth performance and carcass merit of feedlot heifers.
The objective of this study was to determine whether reconstituting field-dried and early-harvested sorghum grain affected the fermentation characteristics and feed value of the ensiled grain when fed to feedlot heifers. In Trial 1, sorghum grain was harvested at 14% moisture, rolled, and reconstituted to 25, 30, or 35% moisture, then ensiled in laboratory-scale silos. Lactic acid concentration increased (d 5 to 90) and pH decreased more rapidly (d 3 to 90) as moisture level increased (P < .05). Acetic acid concentration increased (P < .05) with moisture and day postfilling. Concentration of ethanol was highest (P < .05) in the 30 and 35% moisture grains from d 1 to 5, but by d 90 the ethanol concentration in the 25% moisture grain exceeded (P < .05) that of the two higher-moisture grains. Ammonia N concentration was lowest (P < .05) in the 25% moisture grain at all sampling times postfilling. In Trial 2, 288 heifers (BW = 286+/-83 kg) were used to compare the feeding value of rolled, ensiled sorghum grain harvested at 25% moisture to the same grain reconstituted to 30 or 35% moisture. A steam-flaked corn (SFC) diet served as the control. Final live weight; ADG; hot carcass weight; backfat depth; marbling score; kidney, pelvic, and heart fat; and liver abscess score were not affected by grain treatment (P > .10). Dry matter intake was highest (P < .10) for heifers fed the 25 or 30% moisture sorghum grain diets and lowest for those fed the SFC diet; DMI for heifers fed the 35% moisture sorghum grain diet was intermediate. Feeding 35% moisture sorghum grain improved gain efficiency (P < .10) compared with feeding 25 or 30% moisture sorghum grain by 9.0 and 5.7%, respectively. We conclude that reconstituting sorghum grain beyond the typical moisture levels of 25 to 30% would enhance the fermentation characteristics of the ensiled grain and improve gain efficiency in feedlot heifers. (+info)
Characterization and identification of Pediococcus species isolated from forage crops and their application for silage preparation.
Pediococcus species isolated from forage crops were characterized, and their application to silage preparation was studied. Most isolates were distributed on forage crops at low frequency. These isolates could be divided into three (A, B, and C) groups by their sugar fermentation patterns. Strains LA 3, LA 35, and LS 5 are representative isolates from groups A, B, and C, respectively. Strains LA 3 and LA 35 had intragroup DNA homology values above 93.6%, showing that they belong to the species Pediococcus acidilactici. Strain LS 5 belonged to Pediococcus pentosaceus on the basis of DNA-DNA relatedness. All three of these strains and strain SL 1 (Lactobacillus casei, isolated from a commercial inoculant) were used as additives to alfalfa and Italian ryegrass silage preparation at two temperatures (25 and 48 degrees C). When stored at 25 degrees C, all of the inoculated silages were well preserved and exhibited significantly (P < 0.05) reduced fermentation losses compared to that of their control in alfalfa and Italian ryegrass silages. When stored at 48 degrees C, silages inoculated with strains LA 3 and LA 35 were also well preserved, with a significantly (P < 0.05) lower pH, butyric acid and ammonia-nitrogen content, gas production, and dry matter loss and significantly (P < 0.05) higher lactate content than the control, but silages inoculated with LS 5 and SL 1 were of poor quality. P. acidilactici LA 3 and LA 35 are considered suitable as potential silage inoculants. (+info)
Identification of Lactobacillus isolates from the gastrointestinal tract, silage, and yoghurt by 16S-23S rRNA gene intergenic spacer region sequence comparisons.
Lactobacillus isolates were identified by PCR amplification and sequencing of the region between the 16S and 23S rRNA genes (spacer region). The sequences obtained from the isolates were compared to those of reference strains held in GenBank. A similarity of 97.5% or greater was considered to provide identification. To check the reliability of the method, the V2-V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene was amplified and sequenced in the case of isolates whose spacer region sequences were less than 99% similar to that of a reference strain. Confirmation of identity was obtained in all instances. Spacer region sequencing provided rapid and accurate identification of Lactobacillus isolates obtained from gastrointestinal, yoghurt, and silage samples. It had an advantage over 16S V2-V3 sequence comparisons because it distinguished between isolates of Lactobacillus casei and Lactobacillus rhamnosus. (+info)
Evaluation of wheat-based thin stillage as a water source for growing and finishing beef cattle.
Two trials were conducted to evaluate the nutritional value of wheat-based thin stillage as a water source for cattle. In Trial 1, 20 large-framed steers were fed a basal diet based primarily on barley grain and barley silage, with ad libitum access to water or thin stillage at one of three DM concentrations (2, 4, and 6.7%) in a completely randomized design. The trial consisted of a 70-d growing period and a finishing phase. In Trial 2, total-tract nutrient digestibility coefficients of the basal diet and water treatments fed in the growing period were determined in a randomized complete block design using 12 medium-framed steers. The results showed that when only DMI from the basal diet was considered, there was a linear reduction (P<.01) in DMI and a linear improvement (P<.01) in the gain:feed ratio with no effect on daily gain as thin stillage DM concentration increased. No differences were detected in DMI or efficiency of gain when total DMI (basal diet and thin stillage) was considered. Carcass traits indicated a trend toward increased (P<.06) carcass fat with increasing thin stillage DM concentration. Results of Trial 2 indicated a linear improvement (P<.05) in apparent digestibility of DM, CP, NDF, and energy of the total diet (basal diet and thin stillage) as thin stillage DM concentration increased. We concluded that supplementing growing and finishing cattle with thin stillage reduced the amount of the basal diet required for gain and improved nutrient utilization. (+info)
Feeding value of wheat-based thin stillage: in vitro protein degradability and effects on ruminal fermentation.
Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the nutritive value of wheat-based thin stillage as a fluid source for ruminants. In vitro CP degradability of thin stillage was estimated relative to canola meal and heated canola meal in a completely randomized design. Four ruminally cannulated steers were used in a double cross-over design to determine the effects of consuming thin stillage or water as drinking sources on ruminal fermentation traits. The in vitro CP degradability of thin stillage (55.4%) was lower (P<.05) than that of canola meal (59.4%) and higher than that of heated canola meal (31.6%). Ruminal pH for steers consuming thin stillage was higher (P<.05) at 1000 and 1100 and lower (P<.05) at 1900 and 2000 than that for steers consuming water. Total VFA followed a pattern that was the reverse of that reported for pH. Ruminal NH3 N levels were higher (P<.05) for steers fed thin stillage than for water-fed steers through most of the collection period. Ruminal fluid and particulate matter passage rates were not affected by treatment and averaged .165 and .06 /h, respectively. The amount of thin stillage and water that did not equilibrate with the ruminal fluid and, thus, was considered to bypass the rumen was estimated to be 51.9 and 59.2% of total fluid consumed, respectively. Feeding wheat-based thin stillage had no adverse effects on ruminal metabolism. (+info)
Steam-processed corn and sorghum grain flaked at different densities alter ruminal, small intestinal, and total tract digestibility of starch by steers.
Crossbred steers (n = 7; 400 kg BW), fitted with T-type cannulas in the duodenum and ileum, were used to examine the effects of processing method, dry-rolled (DR) vs. steam-flaked (SF) sorghum grain, and degree of processing (flake density; FD) of SF corn (SFC) and SF sorghum (SFS) grain on site and extent of DM, starch, and N digestibilities and to measure extent of microbial N flow to the duodenum. In Exp. 1, diets contained 77% DRS or 77% SFS with FD of 437, 360, and 283 g/L (SF34, SF28, and SF22). In Exp. 2, diets contained 77% SFC with FD of SF34 or SF22. For sorghum and corn diets, respective average daily intakes were as follows: DM, 6.7 and 8.1 kg; starch, 3.8 and 4.7 kg; N, 136 and 149 g. Steers fed SFS vs. DRS increased (P = .01) starch digestibilities (percentage of intake) in the rumen (82 vs. 67%) and total tract (98.9 vs. 96.5%) and decreased digestibilities in the small intestine (16 vs. 28%; P = .01) and large intestine (.5 vs 1.2%; P = .05). As a percentage of starch entering the segment, digestibility was increased (P = .01) within the small intestine (91 vs. 85%) but was not altered within the large intestine by steers fed SFS vs. DRS. Decreasing FD of SFS and of SFC, respectively, linearly increased starch digestibilities (percentage of intake) in the rumen (P = .03, .02) and total tract (P = .03, .09) and linearly diminished starch digestibilities in the small intestine (P = .04, .09). Starch digestibilities (percentage of entry) within the small or large intestine were not changed by FD. The percentage of dietary corn or sorghum starch digested in the large intestine was very small, less than 2% of intake. Microbial N flow to the duodenum was not altered by SFS compared to DRS, or by decreasing FD of SFS and SFC. Reducing FD of SFS, but not of SFC, tended to decrease (P = .07) microbial efficiency linearly and tended to increase (P = .06) total tract N digestibilities linearly. Steam flaking compared to dry rolling of sorghum grain and decreasing FD of SFC and SFS grain consistently increased starch digestibility in the rumen and total tract of growing steers. The greatest total digestibility of dietary starch occurred when the proportion digested in the rumen was maximized and the fraction digested in the small intestine was minimized. These changes in sites of digestion account, in part, for the improved N conservation and greater hepatic output of glucose by steers fed lower FD of SFS reported in our companion papers. (+info)
Effects of level and source of carbohydrate and level of degradable intake protein on intake and digestion of low-quality tallgrass-prairie hay by beef steers.
Ruminally fistulated steers (n = 13; 263 kg) were used in an incomplete Latin square with 13 treatments and four periods to evaluate the effects of level and source of supplemental carbohydrate (CHO) and level of degradable intake protein (DIP) on the utilization of low-quality, tallgrass-prairie hay. Steers were given ad libitum access to forage (5.7% CP, 2.6% DIP, and 74.9% NDF). The supplementation treatments were fashioned as a 2x3x2 factorial arrangement plus a negative control (NC; no supplement). The factors included two DIP levels (.031 and .122% BW) and three CHO sources (starch, glucose, and fiber) fed at two levels (.15 and .30% BW) within each level of DIP supplementation. The effect of supplementation on forage OM intake (FOMI) was dependent (P<.01) on level and source of CHO and level of DIP fed. When DIP was low, forage, total, and digestible OM intakes were generally greater for the starch treatment than for the nonstarch treatments. However, when the DIP level was high, intakes were greater for the nonstarch (i.e., fiber and glucose) treatments. Generally, FOMI decreased (P<.01) when more supplemental CHO was provided. Supplementation typically increased fiber digestion, but the response was dependent (P<.01) on level and source of CHO and level of DIP. Generally, supplements with low levels of CHO improved NDF digestion (NDFD). However, supplements with the high level of CHO decreased NDFD, except for fiber at the high level of DIP. Organic matter digestion was increased by supplementation, but the impact of increasing CHO was dependent (P<.01) on source of CHO and level of DIP. Supplementation treatments had significant impact on ruminal pH, NH3 N, and the total concentration of organic acids as well as their relative proportions. In conclusion, supplemental DIP enhanced the use of low-quality forage; however, the impact of supplemental CHO on low-quality forage use was dependent on source and level of CHO offered, as well as the level of DIP provided. (+info)