J. Bio. Env. Sci.5(3), 308-315, September 2014
This study was conducted to compare fermentation characteristics and nutritional value of alfalfa hay by in vitro gas production technique using rumen and faeces liquors as inocula. In the first experiment, rumen liquor was collected from three cannulated Ghezel rams. Thirty ml of the buffered rumen fluid were added to 100 ml syringes, containing 200 mg of alfalfa sample. The samples were incubated for 2, 4, 6, 8, 12, 16, 24, 36, 48, 60 and 72 hours, after which net gas production was calculated. In the second experiment, fresh faeces samples were taken from rams and faeces suspension was prepared by adding artificial saliva. All incubation steps were performed similar to the gas production procedure with rumen liquor. Result indicated that, there were no significant differences between gas production volume, organic matter digestibility (OMD), short chain fatty acids (SCFA), metabolizable energy (ME) and net energy for lactation (NEL) contents of alfalfa hay with rumen liquor and faeces suspension at different incubation times. The estimated values of ME, NEL and OMD from gas production with rumen liquor were 10.32, 6.23 MJ/kg DM and 75.98 %, and for faeces liquor were 10.56, 6.36 MJ/kg DM and 77.66%, respectively. In an overall conclusion, it seems that the sheep faeces can be used instead of rumen liquor in adapted gas production method for feed evaluation. Development of the procedure can remove the need for fistulated animals.
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