A study of voluntary intake and digestibility of roughages in relation to their degradation characteristics and retention time in the rumen

Nandra, K.S.; Hendry, A.; Dobos, R.C.

Animal Feed Science and Technology 43(3-4): 227-237

1993


ISSN/ISBN: 0377-8401
DOI: 10.1016/0377-8401(93)90079-y
Accession: 002289585

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Abstract
The voluntary intake, apparent digestibility, apparent mean rumen retention time of dry matter (DM), cell wall organic matter (CWOM) and the components of CWOM of wheaten straw (WS), oaten chaff (OC), lucerne hay (LH) and meadow hay (MH) were measured in rumen cannulated sheep using a 4 times 4 Latin square design. DM degradation characteristics (in sacco) of these roughages were also measured by incubating samples in nylon bags in the rumen of cannulated sheep, fed the same diets. Mean voluntary intake of organic matter (OMI) was more closely related to in sacco degradability at 24 h (r-2=0.88) and mean retention time of DM (r-2=0.98) than to in vivo digestibility (r-2=0.70). More than 90% of the variation in OMI could be accounted for by mean rumen retention time of CWOM, cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin. The intakes of WS and OC (378 and 515 g OM day-1) were lower than those of LH and MH (1251 and 1288 g OM day-1) because of their lower in sacco degradability and the slower rate of passage of indigestible fraction from the rumen.