Effects of Feed Intake and Protein Degradability on Ruminal Characteristics and Site of Digestion in Steers

J. L. Firkins, L. L. Berger, N. R. Merchen, G. C. Fahey, D. R. Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Four multiple-fistulated Hereford steers were used in a 4 × 4 Latin square design with a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement of treatments [two intakes (9.1 and 6.1 kg dry matter/d) and two protein sources differing in ruminal degradability (dry distillers grains and dry corn gluten feed)]. Steers fed at the high intake had faster fluid dilution rates (7.63 versus 6.52%/h), higher ruminal fluid outflows (120.2 versus 91.7 L/d), lower apparent ruminal digestibilities of organic matter (41.3 versus 44.3%) and neutral detergent fiber (56.0 versus 60.2%), and lower total tract digestibilities of neutral detergent fiber (64.3 versus 68.7%) than when they were fed at the low intake. Steers fed dry corn gluten feed had higher apparent ruminal digestibilities of organic matter (45.5 versus 40.1%) and neutral detergent fiber (60.2 versus 56.0%) and lower duodenal flows of nonammonia-nonbacterial N (40.1 versus 52.2% of N intake) than when they were fed dry distillers grains. Efficiency of ruminal bacterial growth was higher when steers were fed at the high versus low intakes. Efficiency of ruminal bacterial growth and site and extent of fiber digestion, especially hemicellulose, but not ruminal escape of protein, can be readily altered by manipulation of feed intake of moderately high forage diets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2111-2123
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume69
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics

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