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Restriction of feed consumption in bull fattening with high levels of molasses/urea



Restriction of feed consumption in bull fattening with high levels of molasses/urea



Cuban Journal of Agricultural Science 28(3): 293-299



41 Holstein times Brahman bulls with an average live weight of 296 kg were distributed in a random block design with five replications in the following treatments: molasses/urea 2 and 4 hr/day and ad libitum. The animals were allocated in groups of three in fifteen pens in an open sided building with slated floors. The diet was molasses/urea 2%, napier (Pennisetum purpureum) forage in restricted amounts (1.5 kg/100 kg LW), 500 g of a fish meal protein supplement and mineral salts ad libitum. The animal were allocated in groups of three in fifteen pens in an open sided building with slatted floors. The diet was molasses/urea 2%, napier (Pennisetum purpureum) forage in restricted amounts (1.5 kg/100 kg LW), 500 g of a fish meal protein supplement and mineral salts ad libitum. The experiment lasted 130 days. The greatest consumptions were observed during the first thirty minutes in animals with limited consumptions of molasses/urea. Water ingestion showed significant differences (P lt 0.05) favoring the animals maintained with ad libitum feeding (34.2 litres/day) and those fed 4 hr daily (32.8 litres/day) compared with those fed 2 hr daily (24.8 litres/day). The animals under a restricted feeding system of molasses/urea showed lower gains (0.64 and 0.85 kg/day for 2 and 4 hr respectively) compared with bulls fed ad libitum (1.05 kg/day). Molasses/urea consumption increased as the time available for consumption augmented (3.12, 4.59 and 6.25 kg DM/day; P lt 0.001, for 2, 4 and ad libitum respectively). No significant differences were observed in feed conversion with molasses/urea (4.92, 5.43 and 5.99 kg DM/day in this same order) however fish meal conversion improved as consumption of molasses/urea mixture increased (0.73, 0.53 and 0.43 g/kg LW gain P lt 0.01 for 2 and 4 hr and ad libitum, respectively). The advantages of employing ad libitum feeding systems are discussed since they tend to improve protein sources.

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