Jump to Main Content
Interaction of forage provision (alfalfa hay) and sodium butyrate supplementation on performance, structural growth, blood metabolites and rumen fermentation characteristics of lambs during pre-weaning period
- Soltani, M., Kazemi-Bonchenari, M., Khaltabadi-Farahani, A.H., Afsarian, O.
- Animal feed science and technology 2017 v.230 pp. 77-86
- acetates, alfalfa hay, blood, blood composition, diet, females, forage, lambs, males, metabolites, milk, pH, propionic acid, rumen fermentation, rumen fluids, short chain fatty acids, sodium butyrate, statistical analysis, weaning weight
- The present study evaluated the interaction of forage provision (F) and sodium butyrate (SB) supplementation in pre-weaning lambs on performance, structural growth, blood metabolites and rumen fermentation characteristics. Twenty eight 3-days old individually housed Chaal breed lambs averaging BW of 6.02 ± 0.57 kg were randomly assigned to 4 treatments (n = 7 lambs/treatment: 4 males and 3 females). Experimental treatments were; 1) starter diet provided neither with F nor with SB (NF-NSB), 2) starter diet supplemented only with SB (NF-SB), 3) starter diet provided only with forage (F-NSB), and 4) starter diet simultaneously provided by forage and SB (F-SB). The F provision was 10% chopped alfalfa hay included in whole concentrate starter based diet (DM basis) and the SB supplementation was 3 g of SB/kg of starter DM. The manual milk feeding was performed for all lambs. The lambs were weaned on d 59 of age but the study lasted until d 73 of age. Performance statistical analysis was carried out for pre-weaning (8 weeks), post-weaning (2 weeks) and entire experimental periods (10 weeks). The results show that starter intake influenced with SB (P = 0.03) and weaning weight was greater in lambs supplemented with SB (P < 0.01). Neither intake nor gain was influenced with forage provision (P > 0.05). The interaction was observed between SB and F for gain in overall period of experiment (P = 0.03). The interaction of SB and F caused the greatest wither height in F-SB treatment (P = 0.03). Body barrel was greater in forage fed lambs (P = 0.01). No blood parameter was influenced with separate or simultaneous provision of F and SB in the current study. The short chain fatty acid (SCFA) concentration (P = 0.02) as well as butyrate concentration (P < 0.01) was increased by SB supplementation. Forage inclusion improved ruminal fluid pH (P = 0.02) and increased acetate (P < 0.01); however both butyrate (P = 0.02) and propionate (P = 0.01) concentrations were reduced. In conclusion we found that F provision was not efficient as maximum as whole concentrate starter diet but simultaneous providing of SB could alleviate the negative effects of provided forage in pre-weaning lambs. Future studies warranted to evaluate microscopic development of rumen papillae in simultaneous provision of forage and butyrate in pre-weaning lambs.