Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Reciprocal combinations of alfalfa hay and corn silage in the starter diets of Holstein dairy calves: effects on growth performance, nutrient digestibility, rumen fermentation and selected blood metabolites

  • M. Kanani (a1), S. Kargar (a1), M. J. Zamiri (a1), S. M. Ghoreishi (a1) and M. Mirzaei (a2)...

Abstract

Adding corn silage (CS) instead of alfalfa hay (AH) to the finely ground starter diet would improve calf performance if feed intake or feed efficiency is increased. We investigated the effects of replacing AH with CS in the starter diet on nutrient intake, digestibility, growth performance, rumen fermentation and selected blood metabolites in Holstein calves. Newborn male calves (n = 30; 3 days of age; 40.2 ± 1.28 kg BW) were assigned randomly to three groups receiving starter diets containing chopped AH (10% dry matter (DM) basis; AH diet), CS (10% DM, CS diet) or their combination (each at 5% level; AHCS diet). The starter diets had the same nutrient composition but differed in DM content (91.2%, 87.5% and 83.8% for AH, AHCS and CS, respectively). The calves were weaned on day 50, and the study continued until day 70. Nutrient intake, BW (at weaning and at the end of the study) and body measurements were not affected by the diet. During the post-weaning period, average daily gain tended to be greater on CS than on AH diet. Feed efficiency was greater in CS than in AH or AHCS calves during the post-weaning period. Digestibility of neutral detergent fiber was greater in AHCS and CS compared with AH during the post-weaning period. Concentration and profile of volatile fatty acids and ruminal fluid pH were not affected by the diet. Replacing AH with CS in the starter diet had no effect on feed intake, growth performance and general health of the calves. These results indicate that AH and CS can be used interchangeably in dairy calf starter diets until 70 days of age, allowing dairy producers more choices in selecting the feed ingredients.

Copyright

Corresponding author

References

Hide All
American Society of Agricultural Engineers 1995. Method of determining and expressing fineness of feed material by sieving. St. Joseph, MI, USA: American Society of Agricultural Engineers.
Association of Official Analytical Chemists (AOAC) 2000. Official methods of analysis. 17th edition., Arlington, VA, USA: AOAC.
Beiranvand, H, Ghorbani, GR, Khorvash, M, Nabipour, A, Dehghan-Banadaky, M, Homayouni, A and Kargar, S 2014. Interactions of alfalfa hay and sodium propionate on dairy calf performance and rumen development. Journal of Dairy Science 97, 22702280.
Castells, L, Bach, A, Araujo, G, Montoro, C and Terré, M 2012. Effect of different forage sources on performance and feeding behavior of Holstein calves. Journal of Dairy Science 95, 286293.
Imani, M, Mirzaei, M, Baghbanzadeh-Nobari, B and Ghaffari, MH 2017. Effects of forage provision to dairy calves on growth performance and rumen fermentation: a meta-analysis and meta-regression. Journal of Dairy Science 100, 11361150.
Iranian Council of Animal Care 1995. Guide to the care and use of experimental animals volume 1, Isfahan, Iran: Isfahan University of Technology.
Kargar, S, Ghorbani, GR, Alikhani, M, Khorvash, M, Rashidi, L and Schingoethe, DJ 2012. Lactational performance and milk fatty acid profile of Holstein cows in response to dietary fat supplements and forage:concentrate ratio. Livestock Science 150, 274283.
Knipfel, JE, McLeod, JG and McCaig, TN 1983. Nutritional value of foods and feeds of plant origin: Relationship to composition and processing. In The Maillard reaction in foods and nutrition (ed. Waller, GR and Feather, MS), pp. 361377. Washington, DC, USA: American Chemical Society.
Kononoff, PJ, Heinrichs, AJ and Buckmaster, DR 2003. Modification of the Penn State forage and total mixed ration particle separator and the effects of moisture content on its measurements. Journal of Dairy Science 86, 18581863.
Mirzaei, M, Khorvash, M, Ghorbani, GR, Kazemi-Bonchenari, M and Ghaffari, MH 2017. Growth performance, feeding behavior, and selected blood metabolites of Holstein dairy calves fed restricted amounts of milk: no interactions between sources of finely ground grain and forage provision. Journal of Dairy Science 100, 10861094.
National Research Council (NRC) 2001. Nutrient requirements of dairy cattle. 7th revised edition, Washington, DC, USA: National Academy of Sciences.
Pasha, TN, Prigge, EC, Russell, RW and Bryan, WB 1994. Influence of moisture content of forage diets on intake and digestion by sheep. Journal of Animal Science 72, 24552463.
Pazoki, A, Ghorbani, GR, Kargar, S, Sadeghi-Sefidmazgi, A, Drackley, JK and Ghaffari, MH 2017. Growth performance, nutrient digestibility, ruminal fermentation, and rumen development of calves during transition from liquid to solid feed: effects of physical form of starter feed and forage provision. Animal Feed Science and Technology 234, 173185.
Pluske, JR, Kim, JC and Black, JL 2018. Manipulating the immune system for pigs to optimise performance. Animal Production Science 58, 666680.
SAS Institute 2013. SAS User’s Guide. Retrieved on 25 March 2019, from https://support.sas.com/documentation/cdl/en/procstat/66703/PDF/default/procstat.pdf.
Van Keulen, J and Young, BA 1977. Evaluation of acid-insoluble ash as a natural marker in ruminant digestibility studies. Journal of Animal Science 44, 282287.
Van Soest, PJ, Robertson, JB and Lewis, BA 1991. Methods for dietary fiber, neutral detergent fiber, and nonstarch polysaccharides in relation to animal nutrition. Journal of Dairy Science 74, 35833597.

Keywords

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed