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Source of carbohydrate and metabolizable lysine and methionine in the diet of recently weaned dairy calves on digestion and growth

Hill, T.M., Quigley, J.D., Bateman, H.G., Aldrich, J.M., Schlotterbeck, R.L.
Journal of dairy science 2016 v.99 no.4 pp. 2788-2796
Holstein, acid insoluble ash, average daily gain, blood meal, body condition, body weight, corn, crude protein, dairy calves, digestibility, digestion, feces, grass hay, lysine, methionine, middlings, neutral detergent fiber, oats, organic matter, protein sources, soybean hulls, soybean meal, starch
Two 56-d trials with weaned Holstein dairy calves (initially 72±1.8kg of body weight, 58 to 60d of age) fed 95% concentrate and 5% chopped grass hay diets were conducted. Each trial used 96 calves (4 calves/pen). During 15 of the last 21d of the first trial and 10 of 14d of the second and third week of the second trial, fecal samples were taken to estimate digestibility using acid-insoluble ash as an internal marker. Digestibility estimates along with 56-d average daily gain (ADG), hip width change, body condition score, and fecal score were analyzed with pen as the experimental unit. In trial 1, a textured diet (19% crude protein) with high starch [52% starch, 13% neutral detergent fiber (NDF)] based on whole corn and oats or a pelleted low-starch (20% starch, 35% NDF), high-digestible fiber diet were used. Within starch level, diets were formulated from supplemental soybean meal or soybean meal with blood meal and Alimet (Novus International Inc., St. Charles, MO) to provide 2 metabolizable protein levels (1 and 1.07% metabolizable lysine plus methionine). The 4 treatments were analyzed as a completely randomized design with a 2 by 2 factorial arrangement (6 pens/diet). In trial 2, all pelleted diets (19% crude protein) were fed. Diets were based on soybean hulls, wheat middlings, or corn, which contained increasing concentrations of starch (13, 27, and 42% starch and 42, 23, and 16% NDF, respectively; 8 pens/diet). Contrast statements were constructed to separate differences in the means (soybean hulls plus wheat middlings vs. corn; soybean hulls vs. wheat middlings). In trial 1, intake of organic matter (OM) did not differ. Digestibility of OM was greater in calves fed high- versus low starch-diets. Digestibility of NDF and starch were less in calves fed the high- versus low-starch diets. Calf ADG and hip width change were greater for high- versus low-starch diets. Source of protein did not influence digestibility or ADG. In trial 2, intake of OM was not different. Digestibility of OM was greater in calves fed corn versus other diets. Digestibility of NDF was greater for calves fed soybean hulls versus wheat middlings. Starch digestibility was not different among treatments. Calf ADG and hip width change were greater in calves fed corn versus other diets. High-starch diets were more digestible and supported more growth in 2- to 4-mo-old dairy calves than replacing starch with digestible fiber. Manipulating metabolizable protein compared with a control diet that was predominately corn and soybean meal did not alter growth or digestibility.