Little information is available on how physical processing of cereals affects crude protein (CP) degradation dynamics in equines. In two experiments the effects of two physical processing methods (micronisation and extrusion) on in situ degradation of CP in barley, maize and peas in the caecum of ponies were investigated.
In experiment 1, three caecally-fistulated mature Welsh-cross pony geldings (approx. LW 270kg) were used whilst two of these ponies were used in experiment 2. In both experiments ponies were offered ad libitum grass hay plus minerals. Incubation bags (monofilament polyester, 6.5 x 20cm, 41μm pores, 16mg/cm2 sample size) contained either unprocessed barley (UB), micronised barley (MB) or extruded barley (EB) (experiment 1) and either unprocessed maize (UM), micronised maize (MM), extruded maize (EM), unprocessed peas (UP), micronised peas (MP) or extruded peas (EP) (experiment 2).