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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Dry Matter Intake and Digestibility of Annual and Perennial Cool Season Grasses Fed to Lambs As High Moisture Hay

item Phillips, William
item Northup, Brian
item Mayeux Jr, Herman

Submitted to: American Society of Animal Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: November 2, 2005
Publication Date: February 4, 2006
Citation: Farris, C.D., Phillips, W.A., Horn, G.W., Northup, B.K., Mayeux, H.S. 2006. Dry matter intake and digestibility of annual and perennial cool season grasses fed to lambs as high moisture hay [abstract]. Proceeding of American Society of Animal Science, Southern Section Meeting, February 4-8, 2006, Orlando, Florida. p. 2.

Interpretive Summary: ABSTRACT ONLY

Technical Abstract: Perennial cool season grasses may be used in combination with annual cool season grasses to extend the stocker calf grazing season in the southern Great Plains. However, ADG may be lower for stockers grazing perennial cool season grasses as compared with annual cool season grasses, due to lower DM intake or reduced DM digestibility. The objective of this experiment was to compare DM intake and DM digestibility of perennial and annual cool season grasses. Wheat (Tricticum aestivum, Var OK101), ‘Jose’ tall wheatgrass (Elytrigia pontica), ‘Manska’ intermediate wheatgrass (Thinopyrum intermedium), and ‘Lincoln’ smooth brome (Bromus inermis) were harvested in the spring (early boot stage of maturity) as high moisture hay. In the intake experiment, lambs (n= 24; BW = 38± 3 kg) had ad libitum access to fresh hay daily. Dry matter intake (DMI) was measured over two 7-d periods following a 5-d adaptation period. In the digestion trial, lambs (n=24; BW = 41± 3 kg) were randomly assigned to one of the four hays. An 8-d total collection of feces followed the 10-d adaptation period. Data were analyzed as a completely randomized design using a model containing forage (digestion trial) and forage and period (intake trial). The DM content of the hay used in both experiments was 45%, 61%, 55%, and 38% for Jose, Lincoln, Manska and wheat, respectively. During the intake trial, lambs consumed 2.72± 0.22% of BW as DM and DM intake (1091± 8 g/d) was similar (P = 0.14) among the four grasses. In the digestion trial, intake was limited to 2.0% of BW and DM digestibility (53.72 ± 2.6%) did not differ (P = 0.43) among the four grass. We concluded that at the boot stage of maturity, DM intake and digestibility was similar among the grasses used in this study.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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