The objective was to evaluate the intake and digestibility of nutrients, ingestive behavior, and performance of goats fed with spineless cactus genotypes resistant to carmine cochineal (Miúda or Orelha de Elefante Mexicana (OEM). Thirty castrated male goats, without defined breed, aged 12 to 14 months, with an average body weight of 19.0±2.8kg, were distributed in a completely randomized design among three treatments (Control - Tifton hay, Miúda, and OEM) and ten replicates; the initial weight was considered as the covariate. The intake of organic matter (OM), neutral detergent fiber (NDF) was highest in the control treatment, while the intake of NFC was higher in the OEM diet. Treatments containing forage cactus showed the highest digestibility of DM, OM, and NFC. The animals fed the control diet spent more time on rumination and total chewing, but the time spent feeding or feeding efficiency, and performance did not differ. The use of spineless cactus genotypes resistant to carmine cochineal (Miúda and Orelha de Elefante Mexicana) in a diet for goats, in the amount of 450g/kg of DM does not interfere with the performance of the animals and improves the digestibility of OM and NFC.
Grasses and legumes are two groups of plants physic and chemically different (amount of crude protein and fiber, mostly), very used in animal feed, whose differences can determine variation in intake, digestibility and animal behavior. We aimed to evaluate performance, feeding behavior and the serum biochemical profile of sheep. The treatments were four levels of substitution of Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon [L.] Pers.) hay for alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) hay (0, 330, 660 and 1000 g kg -1 DM). The randomized block design was used being two blocks and four treatments with 10 replicates). There were no effects on the performance of animals. On the other hand, there was a positive linear effect (P < 0.05) for intake of DM, organic matter, crude protein (CP), total carbohydrates, and non-fibrous carbohydrates. However, the use of neutral detergent fiber (NDF) showed linear decrease with the increase in alfalfa hay (P < 0.05). CP and NDF decreased linearly (P < 0.05) with the replacement of Bermuda grass hay for alfalfa hay. There were decreasing linear effects (P < 0.05) when compared to the time of ingestion and chewing of feed, and increasing linear effects regarding total resting time. Estimated passage rate, density of particles and blood glucose showed a positive linear effect (P < 0.05), while weight of gastrointestinal contents decreased according to alfalfa levels (P < 0.05). The replacement of Bermuda grass hay by alfalfa hay to promote improvement in the performance is not recommended.Key words: Behavior, digestibility, intake, legumes, Medicago sativa.
ABSTRACTNutritional value, performance, feeding behavior and serum biochemical profile of sheep fed with alfalfa hay replacing Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.) hay
The water balance and urinary parameters of lambs fed diets containing cactus cladodes varieties were evaluated. Thirty-six uncastrated male Santa Inês lambs (22.0 ± 2.9 kg initial body weight) were distributed in a completely randomized design, with three treatments and 12 replicates. The animals were fed a control diet (Tifton-85 hay as exclusive roughage), Miúda or Orelha de Elefante Mexicana (OEM) cactus-based diets. Urine samples were collected 45 days after the introduction of the tested diets, and voluntary water intake was measured over 10 days, during the experimental period. Diets containing Miúda or OEM cactus caused a reduction of 68.35 and 77.03% in voluntary water intake, respectively. In addition, the Miúda cactus cladodes caused urinary alkalinization (pH = 8.14) and reduction in the urinary excretion index (UEI) and on the fractional excretion rate (FER) of total calcium (Ca). The diets with OEM cactus cladodes caused higher oxalates intake (6.21 g/day) and increase in urinary volume. Regardless of the variety, there was a reduction in the urinary concentrations of urea, creatinine, total proteins, Ca, phosphorus (P), UEI of urea and P, as well as in FER of P, compared to the control diet. Urinary Mg content and UEI of uric acid and Mg increased and FER of P decreased by diets supplemented with different varieties of cactus cladodes. In conclusion, the cactus cladodes increased water intake and retention, and diuresis in lambs, altered urine parameters, without compromising kidney function.
This study aimed to evaluate the effects of partial replacement (750g/kg) of Tifton hay by two cactus cladodes (Nopalea or Opuntia) on the metabolic profile of lambs. Thirty-six uncastrated male Santa Inês lambs (22.0 ± 2.9kg initial body weight) were distributed in a completely randomized design, with three treatments and 12 repetitions. The animals were fed a control diet (Tifton hay as exclusive roughage), Miúda cactus cladodes-based diet or Orelha de Elefante Mexicana (O.E.M.) cactus cladodes-based diet. Blood samples were collected one day before (baseline) and 45 days after the introduction of the tested diets. The Miúda cactus cladodes caused an increase (P=0.055) in the serum activity of the gamma-glutamyl transferase enzyme (53.66U/L) and in the blood content of glucose and fructosamine. The O.E.M. cactus cladodes caused lower (P=0.038) serum cholesterol content (41.33mg/dL). Regardless of the variety, there was a decrease (P=0.001) in the serum content of indirect bilirubin, urea, and sodium, and increase in the serum magnesium concentration. The partial replacement of the Tifton hay by Miúda or O.E.M. cactus cladodes in lamb feeding increases the enzyme activity, indicating liver and/or kidney changes, but does not cause relevant damage to energy, protein, and mineral metabolism.
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