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Ruminant Nutrition and Forage Utilization
Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 2007;20(1): 70-74.
https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.2007.70    Published online November 27, 2006.
Effect of Fungal Elimination on Bacteria and Protozoa Populations and Degradation of Straw Dry Matter in the Rumen of Sheep and Goats
D. B. Li, X. Z. Hou*
Correspondence:  X. Z. Hou,
An in vitro study was carried out to investigate the differences in rumen microbes and fiber degradation capacity between sheep and goats. Three local male sheep and three Inner Mongolia male cashmere goats (aged 1.5 to 2 years; weight 25.0 to 32.0 kg) were each fitted with a permanent rumen cannula used to provide rumen fluid. Cycloheximide was used to eliminate rumen anaerobic fungi. The results showed that the quantities of fungal zoospores in the culture fluid of the control group were significantly greater in the sheep than in the goats; however, bacteria and protozoa counts were significantly higher in goats than in sheep. The digestibility of straw dry matter did not differ significantly between the two species before elimination of fungi, but tended to be higher for sheep (55.4%) than for goats (53.3%). The results also indicated that bacteria counts increased significantly after elimination of anaerobic fungi; however, the digestibility of straw dry matter significantly decreased by 12.1% and 8.6% for sheep and goats respectively. This indicated that the anaerobic fungi of the rumen played an important role in degradation of fiber.
Keywords: Anaerobic Fungi; Sheep; Goats; Bacteria; Protozoa; Digestibility

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