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Methane emission by goats consuming different sources of condensed tannins

G. Animut, R. Puchala, A.L. Goetsch, A.K. Patra, T. Sahlu, V.H. Varel, and J. Wells

Journal of Animal Science 85(Supplement 2):35. 2007

Boer Spanish (7/8 Boer; initial BW of 37.5 0.91) wethers (24) were used to assess effects of different condensed tannin (CT) sources on methane emission. Diets were Kobe lespedeza (Lespedeza striata; K), K plus quebracho providing CT at 5% DMI (KQ), Sericea lespedeza (Lespedeza cuneata; S), and a 1:1 mixture of K and S (KS). Forages harvested daily were fed at 1.3 times the maintenance energy requirement. The experiment was 51 d divided into two phases. In phase 1 forage diets were fed alone, and in phase 2 25 g/d of polyethylene glycol (PEG) was given mixed with 50 g/d of ground corn. Adaptation periods were 28 and 7 d in phases 1 and 2, respectively. N concentration was 2.28 and 2.36%, in vitro true DM digestibility was 69.8 and 64.8%, and the level of CT was 14.0 and 15.1% for S and K, respectively. DMI was similar among treatments (776, 717, 806, and 800 g/d for K, KQ, S, and KS, respectively; SE = 51.7) and lower (P < 0.05) in phase 1 vs 2 (699 vs 851 g/d). OM digestibility was similar between phases and averaged 47.8, 45.1, 40.1, and 43.7% for K, KQ, S, and KS, respectively (SE = 2.37). Treatment and phase interacted (P < 0.05) in N digestibility (phase 1: 51.4, 49.1, 28.0, and 41.3%; phase 2: 68.3, 65.0, 63.8, and 66.2% (SE = 3.02) for K, KQ, S, and KS, respectively). Methane emission was 14.3, 11.7, 16.2, and 14.1 l/d for K, KQ, S, and KS, respectively (SE =1.25), and in phase 2 PEG markedly increased (P < 0.05) methane emission (9.0 vs 19.1 l/d). There was a substantial difference (P < 0.05) between phases in in vitro methane release by ruminal fluid incubated for 3 wk with conditions promoting activity by methanogens (11.5 and 22.9 ml in phases 1 and 2, respectively). Counts of total bacteria and protozoa were similar among treatments but considerably greater (P < 0.05) in phase 2 vs 1 (bacteria: 1.9 and 19.7 x 1011/ml; protozoa: 9.3 and 18.9 x 105/ml). In summary, CT from different sources had disparate influence on N digestion but similar effects on ruminal microbial methane emission by goats, possibly by altering activity of ruminal methanogenic bacteria though change in actions of other bacteria and(or) protozoa may also be involved.


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