The effect of feeding level on intake and digestibility of Rhodes grass (Chloris gayana, cv Kunth) by dairy cows
Mbwile, R.P.; Uden, P.
Animal Feed Science and Technology 66(1/4): 181-196
ISSN/ISBN: 0377-8401 DOI: 10.1016/s0377-8401(96)01099-1
Eight lactating dairy cows were fed on primary and secondary growths of 6-, 8-, 10- and 12-week-old rhodesgrass. For each growth, 8 feeding levels were used and cows were randomly assigned to 2 blocks of treatments, each containing 4 levels of feeding and 4 plant ages in a double 4 x 4 Latin square design. All forages were fed green and unchopped and levels of organic matter (OM) fed daily varied from 1.7 to 4.8 and from 2.8 to 5.4 kg/100 kg body weight for 1st and 2nd growth forages, respectively. The cows consumed more leaves than stems. Refusals had lower CP and true in vitro OM digestibility and were higher in NDF than the feed on offer. Selection against stems increased with age of the forage.