Submitted to: Journal of Animal Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/26/2008
Publication Date: 6/24/2008
Citation: Hardin, L., Killion, A., Caldwell, J.D., Coffey, K.P., Philipp, D., Coblentz, W.K. 2008. Effect of a lactic acid-lactobacillus product and bale moisture on forage quality, and voluntary intake and digestibility of crabgrass hay by lambs. Journal of Animal Science. 86:28.
Technical Abstract: A 1.6-ha field of common crabgrass (Digitaria ciliaris [Retz.] Koel.) was divided into 12 plots that were used in a randomized complete block design with a 2 x 2 factorial treatment arrangement to determine the impact of a lactobacillus-lactic acid hay preservative and moisture concentration at baling on post-storage forage quality, and then intake and digestibility by lambs. Half of the plots within each block were treated with 81 mL/tonne DM of a solution containing 11% lactic acid and non-viable lactobacillus acidophilus at the time of mowing (T) and half were not treated (U). Within T and U plots, half were baled at 18% (M18) and half at 28% moisture (M28). Six bales per plot were selected at random, weighed, and stored in insulated 6-bale stacks. Core samples were taken from 3 of the bales after 42-d of storage. Black-faced wether lambs (n=16) were allocated randomly by weight to receive 1 of the 4 treatment combinations. Hay was chopped, then offered ad libitum to lambs housed in individual 1.1 x 1.5-m pens with expanded metal floors. Following a 10-d adaptation, total feces were collected for 5 d using fecal bags and dried at 50 C. Ash, CP, and ADF did not differ (P?0.15) among treatments, but NDIN and lignin were greater (P<0.05) and IVDMD was lower (P < 0.05) from M28 vs. M18. Maximum bale temperature was higher (P<0.01) from M28 vs. M18 (55 vs. 35 C). Total DM intake (g/d and g/kg BW) did not differ (P?0.16) among treatments. In vivo DMD was greater (P<0.01) from M28 vs. M18 (55.5 vs 50.1%) and from T vs. U (56.0 vs. 49.7%). Digestible DM intake was greater (P<0.05) from T vs. U (12.7 vs. 10.1 g/kg BW). Therefore, treating crabgrass with a lactic acid-lactobacillus product prior to baling may not affect forage quality, but may improve DM digestion and digestible DM intake by lambs. Baling moist crabgrass hay may have negative impacts on some measures of forage quality but may increase DM digestion by lambs.