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ARS Home » Northeast Area » University Park, Pennsylvania » Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #367353

Research Project: Sustainable Intensification of Integrated Crop-Pasture-Livestock Systems in Northeastern Landscapes

Location: Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research

Title: Ruminal fermentation and enteric methane production of legumes containing condensed tannins fed in continuous culture

item ROCA-FERNANDEZ, ANA - Universidad De Chile
item DILLARD, LEANNE - University Of Auburn
item Soder, Kathy

Submitted to: Advances in Animal Biosciences
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/1/2019
Publication Date: 8/30/2019
Citation: Roca-Fernandez, A., Dillard, L., Soder, K.J. 2019. Ruminal fermentation and enteric methane production of legumes containing condensed tannins fed in continuous culture[abstract]. Advances in Animal Biosciences. 10(3):520.

Interpretive Summary: No Interpretive Summary is required for this Abstract. JLB.

Technical Abstract: Plant secondary metabolites such as condensed tannins (CT) have been shown to alter ruminal fermentation while reducing enteric methane (CH4) production. However, no studies exist that directly investigate both ruminal fermentation and CH4 production of perennial legumes containing various concentrations of tannins. A continuous culture fermentor study was conducted to assess nutrient digestibility, volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentration, microbial protein synthesis, bacterial nitrogen (N) efficiency and CH4 production of 4 legumes containing different CT concentrations. Legumes were fermented in a 50:50 diet with orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata L.): 1) Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.; ALF no CT); 2) Birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus L.; BFT, low CT); 3) Crown vetch [Securigera varia (L.); CV, moderate CT]; 4) Sericea lespedeza [Lespedeza cuneata (Dum. Cours.); SL, high CT]. Diets were randomly assigned to 4 fermentors in 4 periods in a 4 × 4 Latin square design, with 7 d for adaptation and 3 d for sample collection. Temperature, pH and CH4 concentrations were recorded. Effluent samples were analyzed for pH, VFA, and dry matter (DM), organic matter (OM), crude protein (CP), neutral detergent fiber (NDF) and acid detergent fiber (ADF) concentrations for determination of apparent (DM, OM, NDF and ADF) and true (DM and OM) nutrient digestibilities. Microbial protein synthesis and bacterial efficiency were estimated by analysis of N flows and purines. Forage samples were analyzed for DM, OM, CP, NDF, ADF, minerals and CT concentrations. Data were analyzed using the GLIMMIX procedure of SAS. The CT concentrations (g/kg DM) were 3, 21, 38 and 76 in ALF, BFT, CV and SL, respectively. Apparent and true DM and OM digestibilities were lower (P < 0.01) in SL than in ALF and BFT. Bacterial N efficiency per kg of truly digested DM and OM was lower (P = 0.05) in SL than in BFT and CV. The lowest (P < 0.001) CH4 production per unit of digestible nutrients was found in SL. There was a negative correlation (P < 0.001) between CT concentration and CH4 production. However, tradeoffs in ruminal fermentation (reduced nutrient digestibility, VFA concentration and bacterial N efficiency) must be considered when SL is used.