A wide variety of starch based feeds are available for inclusion in equine diets. These feeds may be subjected to physical processing (micronisation or extrusion) prior to inclusion. This experiment evaluates a range of starch based feedstuffs using an in vitro batch culture technique.
A total of 15 feedstuffs were incubated in vitro with an inocula prepared from freshly voided faeces which was collected from six ponies fed grass hay ad libitum. The feeds were five starch based feedstuffs; i.e: maize (M), peas (P), wheat (W), naked oats (NO) or barley (Ba) in one of three physically processed forms i.e: unprocessed (Unp), micronised (Mic) or extruded (Ext). All feeds were ground through a 1.0mm screen prior to incubation. Cumulative gas production (GP) was measured using the pressure transducer technique of Theodorou et al (1994) throughout a 72 h incubation period.