Postweaning performance of calves from Angus, Brahman, and reciprocal-cross cows grazing endophyte-infected tall fescue or common bermudagrass.
Data from 403 Polled Hereford-sired calves from Angus, Brahman, and reciprocal-cross cows were used to evaluate the effects of preweaning forage environment on postweaning performance. Calves were spring-born in 1991 to 1994 and managed on either endophyte-infected tall fescue (E+) or common bermudagrass (BG) during the preweaning phase. After weaning, calves were shipped to the Grazinglands Research Laboratory, El Reno, OK and stratified to one of two winter stocker treatments by breed and preweaning forage; stocker treatments were winter wheat pasture (WW) or native range plus supplemental CP (NR). Each stocker treatment was terminated in March, calves grazed cool-season grasses, and calves were then moved to a feedlot phase in June. In the feedlot phase, calves were fed to approximately 10 mm fat over the 12th rib and averaged approximately 115 d on feed. When finished, calves were weighed and shipped to Amarillo, TX for slaughter. Averaged over calf breed group, calves from E+ gained faster during the stocker phase (P<.10), had lighter starting and finished weights on feed (P< .01), lighter carcass weights (P<.01), and smaller longissimus muscle areas (P<.05) than calves from BG. Calves from E+ were similar to calves from BG in feedlot ADG, percentage kidney, heart, and pelvic fat, fat thickness over 12th rib, yield grade, marbling score, and dressing percentage. Maternal heterosis was larger in calves from E+ for starting weight on feed (P<.01), finished weight (P<.10), and carcass weight (P<.16). These data suggest that few carryover effects from tall fescue preweaning environments exist, other than lighter, but acceptable, weights through slaughter. These data further suggest that the tolerance to E+ in calves from reciprocal-cross cows, expressed in weaning weights, moderated postweaning weight differences between E+ and BG compared to similar comparisons in calves from purebred cows. (+info)
Pregnancy detection and the effects of age, body weight, and previous reproductive performance on pregnancy status and weaning rates of farmed fallow deer (Dama dama).
Fallow does (n = 502) of different ages (mature, 2-yr-old, and yearling) were maintained with bucks for a 60-d breeding season to determine whether previous reproductive performance and changes in BW affect doe pregnancy rates and to compare the effectiveness of ultrasonography and serum pregnancy-specific protein B (PSPB) for the detection of pregnancy in fallow does. Ultrasonography was performed, blood samples collected, and BW recorded at buck removal (d 0) and at 30 and 90 d after buck removal. Lactational status (lactating = WET; nonlactating = DRY) were determined from farm records taken at weaning prior to each breeding season (autumn 1990 through autumn 1994). Ultrasonography and PSPB for determining pregnancy were in agreement 93% of the time. Overall pregnancy rates did not differ (P>.10) relative to age of the doe; the combined pregnancy rate was 92%. We also determined that 82.9% of does conceived early in the breeding season and that the incidence of embryonal-fetal mortality during the first 90 d after buck removal was 2.8%. In general, mature and 2-yr-old DRY does were heavier and had lower pregnancy rates than WET does. The overall weaning rate for all does was 77.9%. Loss in the number of fawns from pregnancy detection to weaning was equivalent to 14.8% for mature does, 24.7% for 2 yr old does, and 42.5% for yearling does. These data indicate that even though pregnancy rates were relatively high, further study is needed to determine the causes associated with subsequent fawn losses, particularly among yearling does. As a production tool, lactational WET/ DRY status testing was found to be an acceptable means for determining the reproductive potential of individual does within the herd. In addition, serum PSPB may be used in place of ultrasonography for pregnancy diagnosis in fallow deer as early as d 30 after buck removal. (+info)
The effect of age and teat order on alpha1-acid glycoprotein, neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio, cortisol, and average daily gain in commercial growing pigs.
The objectives of the study were to evaluate age and teat order on a performance trait, average daily gain, and on physiological stress indicators, alpha1-acid glycoprotein (AGP), neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (N:L), and cortisol in commercial growing pigs from weaning to market age. Pigs (n = 129) from five commercial California farms were weighed and blood-sampled at 28-d intervals from 28 to 168 d of age. Laboratory assays were performed from blood samples to quantify cortisol, AGP, and N:L. Age and facility effects (P<.001), but not teat order effects (P>.05), were found for all three physiological traits and ADG. Pigs that routinely suckled from teats 1, 4, or 6 (numbered from anterior to posterior on the upper teat bank) had similar (P>.05) ADG and BW throughout the production cycle. No correlation (P> .05) was found between cortisol, AGP, and N:L. The use of these physiological and production traits as stress and health indices of growing pigs in commercial facilities has limitations in comparing data between facilities or different ages of pigs. (+info)
Manipulation of the type of fat consumed by growing pigs affects plasma and mononuclear cell fatty acid compositions and lymphocyte and phagocyte functions.
To investigate the immunological effect of feeding pigs different dietary lipids, 3-wk-old, weaned pigs were fed for 40 d on one of five diets, which differed only in the type of oil present (the oil contributed 5% by weight of the diet and the total fat content of the diets was 8% by weight). The oils used were soybean (control diet), high-oleic sunflower oil (HOSO), sunflower oil (SO), canola oil (CO), and fish oil (FO; rich in long-chain [n-3] polyunsaturared fatty acids). There were no significant differences in initial or final animal weights, weight gains, or health scores among the groups. There were no significant differences in the concentration of anti-Escherichia coli vaccine antibodies in the gut lumens of pigs fed the different diets. The fatty acid composition of the diet markedly affected the fatty acid composition of the plasma and of mononuclear cells (a mixture of lymphocytes, monocytes, and macrophages) prepared from the blood, lymph nodes, or thymus. The FO feeding resulted in a significant increase in the number of circulating granulocytes. The FO feeding significantly decreased the proportion of phagocytes engaged in uptake of E. coli and decreased the activity of those phagocytes that were active. The proliferation of lymphocytes in cultures of whole blood from pigs fed the HOSO, SO, or FO diets was less than in those from pigs fed the CO diet. Proliferation of lymph node lymphocytes from SO- or FO-fed pigs was less than that from control, CO-, or HOSO-fed pigs. The natural killer cell activity of blood lymphocytes from pigs fed the FO diet was significantly reduced compared with those from pigs fed the CO diet. The concentration of PGE2 in the medium of cultured blood, lymph node, or thymic mononuclear cells was lower if the cells came from pigs fed the FO diet. Thus, the type of oil included in the diet of growing pigs affects the numbers and functional activities of immune cells in different body compartments. (+info)
Apparent ileal and total-tract nutrient digestion by pigs as affected by dietary nondigestible oligosaccharides.
The effects of two types of nondigestible oligosaccharides (NDO), fructooligosaccharides (FOS), and transgalactooligosaccharides (TOS) were studied on growing and weanling pigs' nutrient digestion. Dietary NDO were included at the expense of purified cellulose. Twenty-five 57-d-old growing pigs, averaging 15.9+/-.6 kg on d 0 of the experiment, were fed a corn-based control diet or the control with 6.8 or 13.5 g of FOS/kg or 4.0 or 8.0 g of TOS/kg (five pigs per diet). Feces were collected on d 28 to 32, and small-intestinal digesta were collected (slaughter technique) on d 42 to 47 of the experiment. Feeds, feces, and digesta were analyzed for DM, inorganic matter, CP, ether extract, and crude fiber. Dietary NDO did not significantly affect apparent fecal and small intestinal digestion of nutrients in growing pigs. After being fed a NDO-free diet through d 10 after weaning, 38-d-old weanling pigs (n = 20), averaging 10.4+/-.8 kg on d 0 of the experiment, were fed a control diet (based on cornstarch, casein, and oat husk meal) or the control with 10 or 40 g of FOS or TOS/kg (four pigs per diet). Feces and urine were collected on d 13 to 17, and ileal digesta were collected via a postvalve T-cecum cannula on d 33 to 37 of the experiment. Feeds, feces, and digesta were analyzed for DM, inorganic matter, CP, ether extract, starch, NDF, ADF, ADL, Ca, P, Mg, Fe, Cu, and Zn. Nonstarch neutral-detergent soluble carbohydrates (NNSC) completed the mass balance for the carbohydrates. Urine was analyzed for N and minerals. The apparent fecal digestion of NNSC increased in the NDO-supplemented diets. The TOS-fed pigs tended (P<.10) to have a higher apparent fecal digestion of CP than the FOS-fed and control pigs but excreted more N via the urine (P<.01). Nitrogen and mineral balances were not affected. The FOS was nearly completely degraded prececally. Mean fiber digestion was lower at the fecal compared with the ileal level, as was the extent of NDO effects. This indicates that fiber digestion requires more than 2 wk to adapt to dietary NDO. Apparent ileal digestion of hemicellulose increased for the NDO-supplemented diets (P<.05), but that of NNSC decreased (P<.001). Thus, under the well-controlled conditions of this experiment, dietary NDO hardly affected nutrient digestion in well-kept growing and weanling pigs. However, digestion of dietary nonstarch carbohydrates may be affected. (+info)
Weaning anorexia may contribute to local inflammation in the piglet small intestine.
Compromising alterations in villus-crypt structure are common in pigs postweaning. Possible contributions of local inflammatory reactions to villus-crypt alterations during the weaning transition have not been described. This study evaluated local inflammatory responses and their relationship with morphological changes in the intestine in 21-d-old pigs (n = 112) killed either at weaning (Day 0) or 0.5, 1, 2, 4 or 7 d after weaning to either milk- or soy-based pelleted diets. Cumulative intake averaged <100 g during the first 2 d postweaning, regardless of diet. During this period of weaning anorexia, inflammatory T-cell numbers and local expression of the matrix metalloproteinase stromelysin increased while jejunal villus height, crypt depth and major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I RNA expression decreased. Upon resumption of feed intake by the fourth d postweaning, villus height and crypt depth, CD8(+) T cell numbers, MHC class I RNA expression and local expression of stromelysin returned to Day 0 values. Together the results indicate that inadequate feed intake during the immediate postweaning period may contribute to intestinal inflammation and thereby compromise villus-crypt structure and function. (+info)
Production systems comparing early weaning to normal weaning with or without creep feeding for beef steers.
A 2-yr study was conducted to determine the effects of three weaning management systems on cow and steer performance. Cow-calf pairs were randomly assigned to one of three treatments, in which the steer calves were 1) early-weaned (yr 1, 177 +/- 9 d; yr 2, 158 +/- 21 d of age) and placed on a finishing diet (EW), 2) supplemented with grain for 55 d on pasture (yr 1, 177 to 231 d; yr 2, 158 to 213 d of age) while nursing their dams and then placed on a finishing diet (NWC), and 3) on pasture for 55 d while nursing their dams (yr 1, 177 to 231 d; yr 2, 158 to 213 d of age) and then placed on a finishing diet (NW). In yr 2, potential breed differences were evaluated using steers of three breed types: 1) Angus x Hereford (BRI); 2) Angus x Simmental (CON); and 3) Angus x Wagyu (WAG). In yr 1, EW steers gained 100% faster (P = .0001) than the average of NWC and NW steers, and NWC steers gained 32% faster (P = .02) than NW steers before weaning. In the feedlot, EW steers had lower intakes (7.70 vs 8.16 kg/d, P = .008) and better feed conversions (.170 vs .153, P = .002) than the average of NWC and NW steers. Marbling score was improved for EW steers compared with the average of NWC and NW steers (P = .003). In yr 2, EW steers had higher gains (P = .0006) during the entire study than the average of NWC and NW steers, and NWC steers had higher gains (P = .003) than NW steers. The EW steers had lower intakes (7.29 vs 7.68 kg/d, P = .0008) and better feed conversions (.160 vs .141, P = .0001) than the average of NWC and NW steers. The CON steers were heavier at slaughter than BRI steers (P = .01), and BRI steers were heavier than WAG steers (P =.0004). Early weaning improved the percentage of steers grading Average Choice or higher by 40%. The percentage of BRI steers grading Choice or greater was 21% higher and percentage of steers grading Average Choice or greater was 33% higher than CON. Cows with EW steers had higher ADG than cows with NW steers (.38 vs -.17 kg/d, P = .0001) before weaning. Cows with EW steers gained in body condition score (.23 vs .00, P = .04), and cows with NW steers did not change. Early weaning improved feed efficiency and quality grades of beef steers. (+info)
Performance and carcass traits of early-weaned steers receiving either a pasture growing period or a finishing diet at weaning.
A 2-yr study was conducted to evaluate 1) steers fed ad libitum high concentrate after weaning (CONC), or 2) steers grown on pasture for 82 d, followed by high-concentrate finishing (PAST), on the performance and carcass traits of 74 early-weaned (117 d of age) steers. Potential breed differences were evaluated using crossbred steers of three types: 1) 3/4 Angus x 1/4 Simmental (BRI), 2) 3/4 Simmental x 1/4 Angus (CON), and 3) 1/2 Wagyu x 1/4 Angus x 1/4 Simmental (WAG). Steers were randomly assigned within breed to the two treatments. There was no interactions (P > .10), so the data were pooled over years. The CONC steers had an ADG that was .17 kg/d higher (P = .0001), intake 1.09 kg/d lower (P = .0001), and gain:feed ratio .013 unit better (.190 vs .177, P = .008) than PAST steers overall. Growing treatment did not affect total concentrate consumed (P = .97). The BRI steers required 31 d less than did CON steers (P = .008), and 23 d less than WAG steers (P = .05) when fed to a constant fat end point (1.1 cm). The BRI steers exhibited an ADG .16 kg/d higher (P = .0003), tended (P = .07) to have an ADG intake .49 kg/d higher, and exhibited gain:feed .01 unit better (.189 vs 180) than WAG steers. When compared with CON steers, BRI steers consumed 310 kg less total concentrate (P = .0003). No differences (P > .38) were observed between growing treatments for carcass characteristics or sensory attributes except that CONC steers tended (P = .11) to improve percentage of steers grading Average Choice or higher by 47% over PAST steers. The WAG steers had a 76-unit higher marbling score (1,000 = Small00, 1,100 = Modest00) (P = .006) than BRI steers, resulting in 19% more (P = .09) steers grading > or = Choice and 82% more (P = .03) grading > or = Average Choice. Liver (P = .15) and rumen (P = .01) weights as a percentage of hot carcass weight were reduced for CONC steers. The CONC steers had higher gain, lower intake, better efficiency, reduced liver and rumen weights, and consumed the same amount of total concentrate when compared with PAST steers. The BRI steers had less finishing days and lower daily intake compared with CON steers. The WAG steers had more days finishing, lower gain, lower intake, more undesirable efficiencies, consumed the same amount of total concentrate, and improved quality grades compared with BRI steers. (+info)