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ARS Home » Plains Area » Lubbock, Texas » Cropping Systems Research Laboratory » Livestock Issues Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #363007

Research Project: Nutritional Intervention and Management Strategies to Reduce Stress and Improve Health and Well-being in Cattle and Swine

Location: Livestock Issues Research

Title: Evaluating core body temperature and lying behavior as an indicator of feed efficiency profile of beef cattle consuming forage based diets

item DAALKHAIJAV, DAMIRAN - University Of Saskatchewan
item DURUNNA, OBIOHA - Lakeland Community College
item TIMSIT, EDOUARD - University Of Calgary
item CAMPBELL, JOHN - Western College Of Veterinary Medicine
item LARSON, KATHY - University Of Saskatchewan
item Carroll, Jeffery - Jeff Carroll
item Dailey, Jeffery
item LARDNER, HERBERT - University Of Saskatchewan

Submitted to: Translational Animal Science
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/18/2019
Publication Date: 12/16/2019
Citation: Daalkhaijav, D., Durunna, O., Timsit, E., Campbell, J.R., Larson, K.A., Carroll, J.A., Dailey, J.W., Lardner, H.A. 2019. Evaluating core body temperature and lying behavior as an indicator of feed efficiency profile of beef cattle consuming forage based diets. Translational Animal Science. 3:1632–1635.

Interpretive Summary: This research represents a two-year collaborative effort by scientists from the University of Saskatchewan, Lakeland College, the University of Calgary, Western College of Veterinary Medicine, and ARS' Livestock Issues Research Unit to determine: i) whether rumen temperature (RMTMP) or rectal temperature (RCTMP) can predict residual feed intake (RFI) and ii) the relationship between activity in terms of lying behavior with RFI profiles of beef cattle. Results from this indicate that using RMTMP and RCTMP or lying behavior as indicator of feed efficiency may not be sensitive enough to truly separate efficient and inefficient animals. However, both RMTMP and RCTMP measurements should provide supplementary data that will enhance (up to 4% of the total variation in RFI) the value of data from direct animal feed efficiency testing and allow for better predictions. This data will be of interest to scientists in the fields of beef cattle physiology and nutrition, and to beef cattle veterinarians and producers.

Technical Abstract: A 2-yr study was implemented to examine the relationship between core body temperature, and lying behavior with performance, and residual feed intake (RFI) beef steer calves. Each year, 80 weaned steer calves were tested during 78-d feeding trial at WBDC, Saskatchewan, Canada. The diet (11.4% CP; 57.3% TDN) was consisted of 71% bromegrass/alfalfa hay and 29% barley. Individual animal DMI was measured with GrowSafe systems (GrowSafe Systems Ltd., Airdrie, Alberta, Canada). Steer rectal (RCTMP; n = 40) and rumen temperatures (RMTMP; n = 80) were obtained by using A TidbiT v2 temperature logger (Part UTBI-001, Onset Corp., Pocasset, MA) and thermobolus (Capteur San'Phone, Medria, Châteaubourg, France), respectively. The time spent lying (lying duration, h/d) and the number of lying bouts of steers (no. /d) were recorded using electronic data loggers (Pendant G Acceleration Data Logger, Onset Corp., Pocasset, MA). Data were recorded at 5-min intervals for 35, 70, and 56 d for RMTMP, RCTMP, and lying duration, respectively. The steers were grouped into 3 classes based on the SD of RFI: low-RFI (<0.5 SD), medium-RFI (± 0.5 SD), or high-RFI (>0.5 SD) classes. Steer classes differing in measured RFI did not differ (P > 0.05) in initial BW (265.4 ± 2.6 kg) (mean ± SD), final BW (311.2 ± 3.1 kg), ADG (0.53 ± 0.02 kg/d), initial backfat thickness (2.5 ± 0.6 mm), final backfat thickness (2.9 ± 0.6 mm), RCTMP (39.3 ± 0.15°C), lying duration (12.9 ± 0.7 h/d), and lying bout frequency (9.2 ± 1.4 no. /d). The greatest (P < 0.05) DMI and RFI were observed in high-RFI (9.3 ± 0.63 kg/d), the lowest (P < 0.05) was observed in low-RFI (7.79 ± 0.75 kg/d), and intermediate was observed in medium-RFI (8.68 ± 0.61 kg/kg) class steers. In contrast, the G:F values were lowest (P < 0.01) for high-RFI. Low-RFI steers (39.76 ± 0.02°C) were lower in RMTMP (P < 0.05) than high-RFI (39.83 ± 0.02°C). Pooled by all steers, RMTMP (r = 0.21, P < 0.01) or RCTMP (r = 0.23, P = 0.07) had weak and positive correlation, but lying duration (r = -0.01; P = 0.95) had no correlation with RFI. In summary, the neither RMTMP nor RCTMP or lying behavior are not accurate enough to decide selecting FE animals based on only single factor. The inclusion of RMTMP or RCTMP in the base model (Koch's model) for the calculation of predicted DMI accounted for an additional 4.0% units of the variation in DMI.