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Animal Breeding and Genetics
Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 2002;15(2): 188-194.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.2002.188    Published online January 1, 2002.
Performance of Male Crossbred Calves as Influenced by Substitution of Grain by Wheat Bran and the Addition of Lactic Acid Bacteria to Diet
A. Khuntia, L. C. Chaudhary
To study the effect of wheat bran and lactic acid producing bacteria (LAB) on the performance of calves, 20 crossbred male cattle calves (day old), distributed into two groups were fed on calf starters containing 50 or 0% maize grain, along with green berseem ad libitum and milk as per body weight. Each group was further divided into two sub groups and one subgroup of each group was supplemented with mixed culture of LAB (Lactobacillus acidophilus L. casei, L. Jugarti). Milk feeding was discontinued after 8 weeks of age. The addition of culture increased (p<0.05) DM intake in calves receiving grainless diet from eighth week to the thirteenth one. There was about 21% higher body weight gain and 14% lower feed : gain ratio in culture supplemented calves. DM digestibility was significantly lower (p<0.05) in calves getting grain without culture. The crude protein NDF and ADF digestibility was higher (p<0.05) in grainless than the grain fed group. No major change on rumen fermentation pattern among different treatments was found. The concentration of total volatile fatty acids (TVFA) and protozoa count was higher (p<0.05) in grain fed group. However, lactic acid concentration was higher and rumen pH was lower due to culture feeding. The incidence as well as severity of diarrhoea was reduced in culture supplemented group. The results indicate that crossbred calves can be reared successfully on grainless diet and berseen fodder. The performance of calves was also improved by LAB supplementation.
Keywords: Grain; Lactic Acid Bacteria; Probiotic; Calves; Growth

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