The Importance of Fiber in Feeding Dairy Cattle ( Publisher's URL )

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The Importance of Fiber in Feeding Dairy Cattle
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Harris, Barney Jr.
University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences, EDIS
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Gainesville, Fla.
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Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Melanie Mercer.
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"Original publication date September 1992, as part of Circular 594, Dairy Production Guide. Reviewed June 2003"
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DS40 The Importance of Fiber in Feeding Dairy Cattle 1Barney Harris, Jr.2 1. This document is DS40, one of a series of the Animal Science, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Original publication date September 1992, as part of Circular 594, Dairy Production Guide. Reviewed June 2003. Visit the EDIS website at 2. R etired Professor, Dairy Science Department, Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville.The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or aliations. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A&M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Millie Ferrer-Chancy, Interim Deane reduction in roughage content of the ration, as a result of high-grain, is closely related to changes in milk fat test and has been associated with metabolic problems, such as acidosis, hoof problems, displaced abomasum, liver abscesses, and a general decline in health. Adequate ber and/or quality forage promotes good health and better performance. Terminologies used in describing the ber content of rations are crude ber, eective ber, acid detergent ber (ADF) and neutral detergent ber (NDF). Both ADF and NDF are newer ways to describe ber and will be discussed later. e benecial aspects of feed ber are primarily due to its eect on regurgitation (cud chewing), chewing, salivation, rumen pH (acidity) and rumen function. Chopping, grinding, or pelleting the roughage tends to reduce its ber value and digestibility. Finely ground roughages may contain little eective ber. In feeding lactating cows, there is usually an economic advantage in using a maximum amount of forages and byproduct feedstus. To be successful, a maximum level of energy intake must be maintained in order to maximize production. Finding a consistent method of identifying the factors that maximize both intake and production has been the goal of considerable research. Dairymen have realized for years that more grain must be fed with poor quality forage than good quality forage to get the same amount of milk. Scientists have attempted to develop a similar system by using ber as the measurement. In the newer system of identifying ber, the ber content of the feedstu has been named according to the laboratory procedure, namely, acid detergent ber and neutral detergent ber. NDF is the more complete measure of total ber since it measures all the cellulose, lignin and hemicellulose. Crude ber measures only cellulose and some lignin whereas ADF includes cellulose and all the lignin. For this reason, ADF appears to be more closely associated with digestibility and NDF with rumen ll or dry matter intake. Dry matter intake and milk production are highly correlated so any component of the ration aecting dry matter intake would aect milk production. Table 1 shows the optimal diet NDF levels suggested by Wisconsin workers and slightly modied for various levels of milk production when using silage and hay base rations. With cottonseed hull base rations, increase NDF by 3 to 5 percentage units (30% vs 35%). Table 1. Suggested optimal NDF levels as a percent of total ration dry matter at various production levels. 3.5% Milk (lb) Optimal NDF Percent 65 or more 28-32 45-65 33-36 31-45 35-39 less than 30 40-45 dry cows 45-50


2Table 2 shows the ber composition of feeds commonly used for dairy cattle. e use of neutral detergent ber values may be useful in purchasing hay and balancing rations for high producing cows. e use of NDF values should be used only as a guide since particle size, length of cut, eectiveness of ber and palatability are not measured by NDF but are also important considerations in formulating rations for dairy cows. Cottonseed hull rations may need to be adjusted upward when using NDF values since they have a greater rate of passage than hay containing rations.


3 Table 2. Composition of feeds commonly used in dairy cattle rations (as fed). Eective Crude Fiber (%) Crude Fiber (%) ADF (%) NDF (%) Alfalfa hay, early bloom28232938 Alfalfa hay, full bloom38303445 Alfalfa, haylage 2016.51723 Alfalfa pellets 12253444 Alfalfa silage 1481214 Bahia hay 42313465 Bakery, dried product111116 Barley, grain 5.25.2617 Beet pulp, dried 20192948 Bermuda hay (coastal)40323665 Bermuda silage 15101220 Bermuda pellets 15313163 Blood meal 1135 Brewers grains 14142141 Brewers grains, wet3.53510 Brewers grains, wet65714 Canola meal (Rapeseed)1211.71532 Carrot, roots 0.70.7---Citrus pulp 12121921 Citrus pulp, silage4.54.256 Citrus pulp, pelleted9121921 Clover hay, alsike35253136 Clover hay, ladino35262832 Clover-grass mix 38.5303552 Corn meal 2228 Corn, high moisture1.4116 Corn dust, pellets66714 Corn, high moisture ear5.65.628 Corn ear, snapped881025 Corn silage 127.41016 Corn cobs, ground4131.53575 Corn gluten feed 881140 Corn distillers 12121538 Corn gluten meal33412 Corrugated boxes, ground65657290 Cottonseed, whole19173140 Cottonseed meal11111724 Cottonseed hulls 43436681 Cowpea hay 42243645 Feather meal 52217 Fish meal 1124 Hominy Feed 55.3812 Eective Crude Fiber (%) Crude Fiber (%) ADF (%) NDF (%) Lespedeza hay 42283656 Linseed meal 991520 Malt sprouts 581226 Meat and bone meal32.247 Millet silage 107912 Milo, grain 22515 Molasses, cane -----------Molasses, cane, dehy.-----------Oats, grain 10101428 Oat silage 86.5410 Oat hay 38.5283554 Oats, fresh 5.25610 Pangola hay 45313968 Pea seed, eld 951812 Peanut meal 44511 Peanut hulls, coarse50505865 Peanut hulls, pelleted20505865 Peanut skins 18121825 Peanut hay 38313645 Rye seed, grain 3336 Rye silage 1191215 Rice bran 10.9101629 Rice hulls, ground35406473 Rice millfeed 12182530 Sorghum, grain, silage129.81219 Sorghum, forage silage1091323 Soybean meal 55612 Soybean meal 4459 Soybean hulls 14344157 Soybeans 55914 Soybean silage 1281318 Soybean hay 38253645 Sudex silage 107814 Sugarcane bagasse45455475 Sugarcane silage 1381215 Sunower meal 26263036 Sunower meal 11111416 Wheat, whole 22410 Wheat, midds 67932 Wheat silage 1181015 Yeast, brewers 3359