Skip to main content Accessibility help

Effects of leaf shear breaking load on the feeding value of perennial ryegrass (Lolium pevenne) for sheep. II. Effects on feed intake, particle breakdown, rumen digesta outflow and animal performance

  • T. Inoué (a1), I. M. Brookes (a1), A. John (a2), E. S. Kolver (a1) and T. N. Barry (a1)...


A series of experiments was conducted at Palmerston North, New Zealand, during 1988–91 to compare the efficiency of chewing during eating and rumination, rumen fractional outflow rate (FOR), voluntary organic matter intake, liveweight gain and wool production in sheep fed either low (LS) or high (HS) leaf shear breaking load perennial ryegrass (PRG). The LS ryegrass had a 13% lower mean leaf shear breaking load and ingestion rates tended to be higher than for HS PRG, but no consistent significant treatment differences were observed in rate of particle breakdown, rumen FOR, voluntary intake or animal performance. It was concluded that selection for reduced leaf shear breaking load per se did not improve feeding value. The total shear load required to reduce a unit dry weight of PRG leaf to < 1 mm particles (index of masticatory load; IML) differed by only 3% between LS and HS PRG in this study, due to higher leaf length:dry weight ratios for LS PRG. It is therefore suggested that IML, which takes into account both leaf shear breaking load and associated changes in leaf morphology may be a better criterion for selection than leaf shear breaking load alone in breeding programmes to improve the feeding value of perennial ryegrass.



Hide All
Akin, D. E. (1976). Ultrastructure of rumen bacterial attachment to forage cell walls. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 31, 562568.
Akin, D. E. (1979). Microscopic evaluation of forage digestion by rumen microorganisms – a review. Journal of Animal Science 48, 701710.
Bailey, R. W. (1964). Pasture quality and ruminant nutrition. 1. Carbohydrate composition of ryegrass varieties grown as sheep pastures. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research 7, 496507.
Betteridge, G. P., Tallon, J. L., Staines, M. P., Buckley, R. G., Bryan, H. T. & Stevenson, I. G. (1986). An interim report on the tensile properties of four forage grasses. Internal Report, Physics and Engineering Laboratory. Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, Wellington, New Zealand.
Bigland, G. & Lippold, O. C. J. (1954). The relation between force, velocity and integrated electrical activity in human muscle. Journal of Physiology 123, 214224.
Binnerts, W. T., van't Klooster, A. Th. & Frens, A. M. (1968). Soluble chromium indicator measured by atomic absorption in digestion experiments. Veterinary Record 82, 470.
Black, J. L., Faichney, G. J. & Sinclair, R. E. (1982). Role of computer simulation in overcoming limitations to animal production from pastures. In Nutritional Limits to Animal Production from Pastures (Ed. Hacker, J. B.), pp. 473493. Farnham Royal: Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux.
Costigan, P. & Ellis, K. J. (1987). Analysis of faecal chromium from controlled release devices. New Zealand Journal of Technology 3, 8992.
Dellow, P. G. & Lund, J. P. (1971). Evidence for central timing of rhythmical mastication. Journal of Physiology 215, 113.
Domingue, B. M. F., Dellow, D. W. & Barry, T. N. (1991 a). Voluntary intake and rumen digestion of a lowquality roughage by goats and sheep. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 117, 111120.
Domingue, B. M. F., Dellow, D. W. & Barry, T. N. (1991 b). The efficiency of chewing during eating and ruminating in goats and sheep. British Journal of Nutrition 65, 355363.
Domingue, B. M. F., Dellow, D. W., Wilson, P. R. & Barry, T. N. (1991 C). Comparative digestion in deer, goats and sheep. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research 34, 4553.
Earle, D. F. & McGowan, A. A. (1979). Evaluation and calibration of an automated rising plate meter for estimating dry matter yield of pasture. Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture and Animal Husbandry 19, 337343.
Easton, H. S. (1989). Variability of leaf shear strength in perennial ryegrass. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research 32, 16.
Elliott, R., Norton, B. W. & Ford, C. W. (1985).In vivo colonization of grass cell walls by rumen micro-organisms. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 105, 279283.
Evans, C. C., MacRae, J. C. & Wilson, S. (1977). Determination of ruthenium and chromium by x-ray fluorescence spectrometry and the use of inert ruthenium (II) phenanthroline as a solid phase marker in sheep digestion studies. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 89, 1722.
Evans, E. W., Pearce, G. W., Burnett, J. & Pillinger, S. L. (1973). Changes in some physical characteristics of the digesta in the reticulo-rumen of cows fed once daily. British Journal of Nutrition 29, 357376.
Faichney, G. J. (1975). The use of markers to partition digestion within the gastro-intestinal tract of ruminants. In Digestion and Metabolism in the Ruminant (Eds McDonald, I. W. & Warner, A. C. I.), pp. 277291. Armidale: University of New England Publishing Unit.
Hiiemae, K. M. (1978). Mammalian mastication: a review of the activity of the jaw muscles and the movements they produce in chewing. In Development, Function and Evolution of Teeth (Eds Butler, P. M. & Joysey, Y. K. A.), pp. 359398. London: Academic Press.
Inoué, T., Brookes, I. M. & Barry, T. N. (1989). Effects of selection for shear strength on the voluntary intake and digestion of perennial ryegrass fed to sheep. Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production 49, 221224.
Inoué, T., Brookes, I. M., John, A., Hunt, W. F. & Barry, T. N. (1994). Effects of leaf shear breaking load on the feeding value of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) for sheep. I. Effects on leaf anatomy and morphology. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 123, 129136.
Kennedy, P. M. (1985). Effect of rumination on reduction of particle size of rumen digesta by cattle. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 36, 819828.
Li, C. C. (1964). Introduction to Experimental Statistics, pp. 207226. New York: McGraw-Hill.
MacKinnon, B. W., Easton, H. S., Barry, T. N. & Sedcole, J. R. (1988). The effect of reduced leaf shear strength on the nutritive value of perennial ryegrass. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 111, 469474.
MacRae, J. C. & Evans, C. C. (1974). The use of inert ruthenium–phenanthroline as a digesta particulate marker in sheep. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society 33, 10A11A.
Parker, W. J. (1990). Application of intraruminal chromium controlled release capsules to the measurement of herbage intake of sheep at pasture. PhD thesis, Massey University, New Zealand.
Phyllips, A. G. & Fibiger, H. C. (1973). Substantia nigra: self-stimulation and post stimulation feeding. Physiological Psychology 1, 233236.
Podolsky, R. J. & Tawada, K. (1980). A rate-limiting step in muscle contraction. In Muscle Contraction: Its Regulatory Mechanisms (Eds Ebashi, S. et al. ), pp. 6578. Tokyo: Japan Science Society Press/Berlin: Springer-Verlag.
Poppi, D. P., Norton, B. W., Minson, D. J. & Hendricksen, R. E. (1980). The validity of the critical size theory for particles leaving the rumen. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 94, 275280.
Poppi, D. P., Hughes, T. P. & L'Huillier, P. J. (1987). Intake of pasture by grazing ruminents. In Livestock Feeding on Pasture (Ed. Nicol, A. M.), Occasional publication no. 10, pp. 5564. Hamilton: New Zealand Society of Animal Production.
Robertson, J. B. & Van Soest, P. J. (1981). The detergent system of analyses and its application to human foods. In Basic and Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 3 (Eds James, W. P. T. & Theander, O.), pp. 123158. New York: Marcel Dekker.
Roughan, P. G. & Holland, R. (1977). Predicting in-vivo digestibilities of herbages by exhaustive enzymic hydrolysis of cell walls. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 28, 10571064.
Sas Institute (1985). SAS User's Guide: Statistics, Version 5 Edition. Cary, NC: SAS Institute Inc.
Tan, T. N., Weston, R. H. & Hogan, J. P. (1971). Use of 103Ru-labelled tris (1, 10-phenanthroline)-Ruthenium (II) chloride as a marker in digestion studies with sheep. International Journal of Applied Radiation and Isotopes 22, 301308.
Thornton, R. F. & Minson, D. J. (1973). The relationship between apparent retention time in the rumen, voluntary intake, and apparent digestibility of legume and grass diets in sheep. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 24, 889898.
Troelsen, J. E. & Bigsby, F. W. (1964). Artificial mastication – a new approach for predicting voluntary forage consumption by ruminants. Journal of Animal Science 23, 11391142.
Ulyatt, M. J. (1983). Plant fibre and regulation of digestion in the ruminant. In Fibre in Human and Animal Nutrition (Eds Wallace, G. & Bell, L.), pp. 103107. Wellington: The Royal Society of New Zealand.
Ulyatt, M. J., Dellow, D. W., John, A., Reid, C. S. W. & Waghorn, G. C. (1986). Contribution of chewing during eating and rumination to the clearance of digesta from the ruminoreticulum. In Control of Digestion and Metabolism in Ruminants (Eds Milligan, L. P., Grovum, W. L. & Dobson, A.), pp. 498515. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Vincent, J. V. (1982). The mechanical design of grass. Journal of Material Science 17, 856860.
Waghorn, G. C., Shelton, I. D. & Thomas, V. J. (1989). Particle breakdown and rumen digestion of fresh ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) and lucerne (Medicago sativa L.) fed to cows during a restricted feeding period. British Journal of Nutrition 61, 409423.
Williams, C. H., David, D. J. & Iismaa, O. (1962). The determination of chromic oxide in faeces samples by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Journal of Agricultural Science 59, 381385.


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