Complete rations containing coarsely chopped or ground hay for dairy cows in confinement vs. conventional grazing
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Keywords

Dairy cattle--Feeding and feeds--Puerto Rico
Sugarcane as feed

How to Cite

Randel, P. F. (1991). Complete rations containing coarsely chopped or ground hay for dairy cows in confinement vs. conventional grazing. The Journal of Agriculture of the University of Puerto Rico, 75(3), 241-251. https://doi.org/10.46429/jaupr.v75i3.3592

Abstract

Treatments A and B, based on complete rations, and a conventional control (C) were compared in a completely randomized design including 8 preliminary days and 3 successive 28-day comparison periods with 17 cows (13 Holstein and 4 Brown Swiss). Both complete rations incorporated 60% basal concentrates, principally ground maize, soybean meal, wheat middlings and cane molasses, and 40% grass hay, but differed in the coarsely chopped hay in A and ground hay (9.5 mm screen) ¡n B. Formulation specified 13% crude protein and 1.58 Mcal of net energy for lactation/kg of dry matter (DM). Each was fed to two groups of three cows, ad libitum in period 1 and restricted in periods 2 and 3 in late afternoon. During the hottest hours these animals rested under shade, which reduced thermal stress. Five control cows grazed rotationally at 2.5 animals/ha in gramineous swards of good quality, with individual supplementation of basal concentrates according to milk yield. Late in period 1, DM intake (DMI) of A and B reached maxima of 22 and 23 kg per per. Mean results for A, B and C, respectively, during 84 days were: daily DMI, 16.2, 16,4 and 6.0 kg (excluding pasture herbage), and as a percentage liveweight (LW), 2.96, 2.98 and 1.09; LW, 548, 552 and 550 kg; daily milk yield, 17.7, 16.5 and 16.0 kg; 4% fat corrected milk (FCM), 15.0, 13.7 and 14.0 kg; milk fat percentage, 3.00, 2.87 and 3.19; FCM/concentrates DMI ratio, 1.55, 1.39 and 2.34. One cow of B died of acute bloat in period 2, possibly because of insufficiency of effective fiber in the rumen. Complete ration A appears promising as a possible alternative for intensified dairying in Puerto Rico.
https://doi.org/10.46429/jaupr.v75i3.3592
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