Supplementation of sheep with increasing levels of crude protein: performance, animal behavior, and contamination and spread of nematode larvae in Brachiaria brizantha ‘Xaraés’ pasture

Rosane Cláudia Rodrigues, Maria Antônia Melo, Sâmara Stainy Cardoso Sanchês, Jocélio dos Santos Araújo, Marcônio Martins Rodrigues, Ana Paula Ribeiro de Jesus, Susan Emanuelly Pinheiro Amorin, Ricardo Alves Araújo, Ivo Guilherme Ribeiro Araújo, Henrique Nunes Parente

Abstract


The aim of the present study was to evaluate the performance, animal behavior, and contamination and spread of nematode larvae of sheep supplemented with increasing levels of protein (15, 25, and 35%) on Xaraés grass (Brachiaria brizantha ‘Xaraés’) pastures. Fifteen Santa Inês crossbred sheep, with an average age of approximately five months and average initial weight of 14.63 kg, were used in the experiment. The feeding behavior (grazing and idle times) of animals was found to be influenced by the supplementation provided. The highest level of supplementation provided to the animals reduced their grazing time. The different levels of supplementation influenced the average daily gain and total final body weight gain of the sheep in Xaraés grass pastures. A significant difference was observed in the presence of parasitic larvae in the Xaraés grass pastures depending on different protein levels throughout the regrowth period. The number of larvae in feces was influenced by the protein content of the supplement, and varied throughout the pasture rest period. Animals showed a decrease in the number of larvae as their dietary crude protein (CP) content was increased. Supplementation with high protein, together with the action of vermifuge, increased the performance of sheep and reduced their parasite load and grazing time in Xaraés grass pastures.

Keywords


Endoparasites; Larvae; Performance; Sheep.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5433/1679-0359.2017v38n1p369

Semina: Ciênc. Agrár.
Londrina - PR
E-ISSN 1679-0359
DOI: 10.5433/1679-0359
E-mail: semina.agrarias@uel.br
Este obra está licenciado com uma Licença Creative Commons Atribuição-NãoComercial 4.0 Internacional