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Effects of milk replacer feeding level on Alpine kid performance

A. L. Goetsch1, R. Puchala1, M. Lachica1, M. Cameron1, T. Sahlu1, and L. J. Dawson2

1E (Kika) de la Garza Institute for Goat Research, Langston University, Langston, OK, and 2College of Veterinary Medicine, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK

Seventy-nine Alpine kids (35 female and 44 male) were used to determine effects on ADG of milk replacer (MR) consumed ad libitum (AS/AV) or with restricted consumption of volume alone (AS/RV) or of volume and solids (RS/RV). Kids began the 8-wk experiment at 3 to 9 d after birth (3.5 ± 0.11 and 3.9 ± 0.08 kg initial BW for females and males, respectively). A commercial MR was fed twice daily. The AS/AV kids received ad libitum access to MR with 18% DM. The RS/RV kids received 18% DM MR, with ad libitum access in wk 1 and approximately 90, 80, and 70% of consumption by AS/AV kids in wk 2, 3, and 4 to 8, respectively. The AS/RV kids received ad libitum access to 18% DM MR in wk 1, thereafter receiving a similar quantity of solids as AS/AV kids and limited volume or water, with a MR DM concentration of 20, 22.5, and 25.7% in wk 2, 3, and 4 to 8, respectively. Milk replacer DMI was 231, 223, and 197 g/d in wk 1 to 4 (SE 7.1) and 276, 260, and 228 g/d (SE 8.2) in wk 5 to 8, and water intake was 1,050, 802, and 899 g/d (SE 30.7) in wk 1 to 4 and 1,258, 846, and 1,039 g/d (SE 32.8) in wk 5 to 8 for AS/AV, AS/RV, and RS/RV, respectively. Gain of BW was least (P < 0.07) among treatments for RS/RV in wk 1 to 4 (146, 131, and 118 g/d, SE 5.9) and 5 to 8 (137, 140, and 115 g/d, SE 7.2, for AS/AV, AS/RV, and RS/RV, respectively). However, sex influenced (P = 0.05) treatment effects on ADG in wk 1 to 8 (female: 129, 120, and 117 g/d and male: 155, 151, and 116 g/d for AS/AV, AS/RV, and RS/RV, respectively; SE 7.2). Treatment did not affect BW gain in the subsequent 4-wk period after weaning (P > 0.10). In conclusion, restricting intake of fluid or water alone in MR did not enhance ADG of Alpine kids, and lower growth potential of female vs male kids may lessen susceptibility to effects of limited MR DMI.


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