Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Madison, Wisconsin » U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center » Dairy Forage Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #338643

Research Project: Forage Characteristics that Alter Feed Utilization, Manure Characteristics and Environmental Impacts of Dairy Production

Location: Dairy Forage Research

Title: Impact of dietary starch concentration formulated with two types of corn silage on methane and ammonia emissions in dairy cows

item SANCHEZ-DUARTE, JUAN - South Dakota State University
item Kalscheur, Kenneth
item Powell, Joseph

Submitted to: American Dairy Science Association Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/11/2017
Publication Date: 6/25/2017
Citation: Sanchez-Duarte, J.I., Kalscheur, K., Powell, J.M. 2017. Impact of dietary starch concentration formulated with two types of corn silage on methane and ammonia emissions in dairy cows [abstract]. American Dairy Science Association Abstracts. 100(Suppl 2):108.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The objective of this study was to evaluate methane (CH4) and ammonia (NH3) emissions of lactating dairy cows fed different starch level and corn silage type. After the completion of an 8-wk production study, 48 Holstein cows were allocated to 1 of 4 air-flow controlled chambers (2 cows/chamber) for 6 d in a randomized complete block design. Chamber was the experimental unit. Cows were fed 1 of 4 diets arranged as a 2 × 2 factorial with 2 corn silage hybrids [conventional (CS) and brown midrib (BMR) corn silage] and 2 dietary starch concentrations (19 and 25% of DM). Performance data from the last 6 days and emission measurements from the last 3 days were recorded and used for analysis. Soyhulls and beet pulp replaced corn grain in the diet to decrease starch concentration. There were no effects of dietary starch concentration and corn silage on dry matter intake (DMI), energy-corrected milk (ECM), ECM/DMI, and milk protein percentage; however, milk fat percentage was greater (P<0.05) for cows fed diets formulated at 25% starch rather than diets with 19% starch. An interaction of silage × starch (P<0.05) was observed for CH4 expressed as per unit of DMI and for milk urea nitrogen (MUN). Cows fed CS-25% starch had the lowest MUN. Cows fed BMR-25% starch produced 1.3 g CH4 less per unit of DMI than cows fed CS-25% starch, but were similar to cows fed 21% starch for any silage type. Emissions of CH4 and NH3 (g/d), and CH4/ECM did not differ among treatments. It was concluded that cows fed the BMR-25% starch have the potential to reduce CH4 emissions per unit of DMI, even though productive performance was not improved.