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The effects of monensin in diets fed to finishing beef steers and heifers on growth performance and fecal shedding of Escherichia coli 0157:H7
- Kristin E. Hales, James E. Wells, Elaine D. Berry, Norasak Kalchayanand, James L. Bono, Min-Seok Kim
- Journal of animal science 2017 v.95 no.8 pp. 3738-3744
- Escherichia coli O157, bacterial shedding, beef cattle, diet, feces, finishing, growth performance, heifers, models, monensin, steers
- Two experiments were conducted to study the effects of monensin dose on growth performance and Escherichia coli O157:H7 shedding in finishing beef cattle. In Exp. 1, 198 heifers (298 ± 1.1 kg BW) were allocated to 1 of 2 treatments consisting of 1) 200 mg/heifer daily of monensin and 2) 400 mg/ heifer daily of monensin and fed for 151 d. In Exp. 2, 199 steers (430 ± 1.9 kg BW) were stratified by BW and allocated to 1 of 2 treatments consisting of 1) 0 mg/steer daily of monensin and 2) 400 mg/steer daily of monensin and fed for 128 d. For both experiments, there were 4 pen replicates per treatment. For Exp. 1 and Exp. 2, the model included the fixed effect of treatment for growth performance measures and the fixed effects of treatment, time, and treatment × time interaction, respectively, for E. coli O157:H7 shedding. In Exp. 1, final BW was 1.9% greater for heifers fed 400 mg/d monensin than for heifers fed 200 mg/d monensin (P = 0.05). Furthermore, ADG was 4.9% greater (P = 0.05) and G:F was 3.1% greater (P = 0.04) when the heifers were fed 400 mg/d monensin vs. 200 mg/d monensin. Pen prevalence for E. coli O157:H7 (P = 0.96) and the percentage of animals in the pen shedding E. coli O157:H7 at enumerable levels (P = 0.82) did not differ between heifers fed 200 mg/d monensin and heifers fed 400 mg/d monensin over the 4 sampling periods. For Exp. 2, steers fed the supplement containing monensin had a 1.9% greater final BW (P = 0.04) and a 5.2% greater ADG (P = 0.02) than steers fed a control supplement without monensin. No differences in DMI or G:F were noted across the treatments (P ≥ 0.14). Escherichia coli O157:H7 percentage of enumerable cattle within the pen was greater for the steers fed monensin than the control steers not fed monensin than the control steers not fed monensin (P = 0.02) over the 4 sampling periods. However, the percentage of animals in the pen shedding E. coli O157:H7 (prevalence positive) did not differ between treatments (P = 0.18), nor did the average fecal counts (P = 0.45). In conclusion, feeding a higher dose (400 mg/d) of monensin improved final BW and ADG compared with a low dose of monensin or a no-monensin control in steers and heifers across multiple years. The percentage of animals shedding E. coli O157:H7 at enumerable levels was greater for steers fed the monensin supplement than for steers fed the control supplement, yet the presence of monensin, irrespective of the dose, did not affect the percentage of animals in the pen shedding E. coli O157:H7.