The Effect of Feeding Ensiled Alfalfa with Different Levels of Waste Date on Rumen Protozoal Population, Microbial Protein Synthesis and Blood Parameters in Kermani Sheep
Introduction Ensiling is less dependent to weather condition and farmers are trying to ensile forages for preserving them for livestock feeding. Ensiling legumes because of their buffering capacity and high moisture content are difficult. Also, ensiling alfalfa will lose up to %85 of its nitrogen content as non-protein nitrogen. Adding some additives like carbohydrate sources will improve alfalfa silage quality and its physical characteristics. There are some agricultural byproducts which can be used in animal feeding. Waste date is being produced annually in Iran and it can be used as carbohydrate source during alfalfa ensiling. This experiment was conducted to investigate ensiling alfalfa with different levels of waste date and its feeding effect on rumen protozoa population, microbial protein synthesis and blood parameters in Kermani sheep.
Materials and method Eight rams (47 ± 2 kg BW) were used in a 2×2 change over design experiment. Each experimental period was conducted for 21 days (16 days for adaptation and days for sampling). For ensiling, fresh alfalfa with different levels of waste date (0, 5, 10 and %15) were mixed together and ensiled in 100 L containers for 45 days. After opening chemical compositions of silages such as dry matter, crude protein, ammonia nitrogen, crude fat, organic matter, ash, NDF, ADF and pH were determined according to standard methods. Then, it was used %30% of diet in experimental diets as: 1) control diet (alfalfa silage without waste date); 2) alfalfa silage with 5% waste date; 3) alfalfa silage with 10% waste date and 4) alfalfa silage with 15% waste date. Treatment diets were mixed and fed as a TMR at 0800 and 1700 h. Amount of the TMR offered was recorded, and treatment diets were sampled daily for the last 5 d of each period. Orts were weighed, recorded, and sampled according to the same procedures followed for the treatment diets. Urine samples were acidified during collection to a pH key words:
Iranian Journal of Animal Science Reaserch, Volume:8 Issue: 3, 2017
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