Tropical kudzu as a protein source in sheep diets

Camila Carvalho da Paz, Aníbal Coutinho do Rêgo, Cristian Faturi, Luiz Fernando de Souza Rodrigues, José Adérito Rodrigues Filho, Paulo Henrique de Souza, Dayana Mesquita da Conceição


Protein nutrition plays a key role in ruminant performance and represents the largest proportion of costs in animal feed. The present study evaluated whether the roughage portion of Santa Inês sheep diets could be supplemented with different ratios of tropical kudzu as a protein source and assessed the best inclusion level of tropical kudzu based on digestibility, intake, nitrogen balance and feeding behavior. Twenty rams were evaluated during the 20-day experimental period, and they were fed formulated diets with a roughage portion (60%) consisting of Elephant grass and tropical kudzu, the latter supplemented at different concentrations (0, 25, 50 and 75% on a dry matter basis). Forty percent of the concentrate portion consisted primarily of ground corn and soybean meal adjusted to obtain an isoproteic diet. Chemical and bromatological analyses, as well as, analyses to assess intake, digestibility, nitrogen balance and feeding behavior, were conducted. No statistically significant differences were found (P>0.05) for the intake and digestibility of dry matter (DM), crude protein (CP), ether extract (EE), neutral detergent fiber (NDF), hemicellulose (HEMI), non-fiber carbohydrates (NFC) and total digestible nutrients (TDN) or for the feeding behavior (feeding, rumination and idle times in h/day) and nitrogen balance between the diets studied. Thus, tropical kudzu can be considered a feed alternative to supplementation with prime protein foods (in this case, soybean meal) in sheep diets.


Digestibility; Legume; Pennisetum purpureum; Pueraria phaseoloides; Protein supplementation.

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