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Ruminant Nutrition and Forage Utilization
Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 2007;20(6): 887-893.
https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.2007.887    Published online May 2, 2007.
Influence of Varying Dry Matter and Molasses Levels on Berseem and Lucerne Silage Characteristics and Their In situ Digestion Kinetics in Nili Buffalo Bulls
N. A. Touqir, M. Ajmal Khan*, M. Sarwar, M. Nisa, W. S. Lee, H. J. Lee, H. S. Kim
Correspondence:  M. Ajmal Khan,
Influences of forage DM and addition of cane molasses on silage characteristics of berseem (Trifolium alexandrium) and lucerne (Medicago sativa) and their ruminal digestion kinetics in Nili buffaloes were studied. Berseem and lucerne fodders (at one tenth bloom) were ensiled with wheat straw in laboratory silos to achieve 20, 30, 40% forage DM and without wheat straw (control); each forage DM level was supplemented with 2, 4 and 6% of cane molasses at ensiling. The pH and lactic acid contents of berseem and lucerne silages were affected by both forage DM and addition of molasses. Dry matter, CP and true protein (TP) of berseem and lucerne silages were affected by forage DM at ensiling but were not affected by the addition of cane molasses. Higher DM, CP and TP losses were observed when berseem and lucerne fodders were ensiled either without wheat straw or with wheat straw to achieve 20% and 40% forage DM at ensiling compared with 30% DM at ensiling. Fiber fractions (NDF, ADF, hemicellulose and cellulose) of berseem silage and lucerne silage were significantly increased with increasing forage DM at ensiling. Addition of cane molasses did not affect the DM, CP, TP and fiber fractions of both berseem and lucerne silages. Berseem and lucerne ensiled at 30% DM with 2% cane molasses were screened for comparative ruminal digestion kinetics with their respective fodders. Addition of wheat straw to berseem or lucerne fodder at ensiling depressed DM and NDF ruminal degradability. However, ruminal lag time, rate of degradation and extent of digestion of silages were similar to their respective fodders. In conclusion, berseem and lucerne could be ensiled with wheat straw to increase their DM to 30% along with 2% molasses for buffaloes.
Keywords: Berseem; Lucerne; Silage; Legume; Buffalo; Digestion

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