Effect of association of fresh cassava root with corn silage in replacement for cactus cladodes on dairy cow performance


The aim of this study was to investigate the replacement effect of cactus cladodes with cassava root and corn silage (CRCS) (0, 25, 50, 75, and 100%, dry matter basis) in diets of lactating dairy cows on nutrients intake and digestibility, microbial protein synthesis, nitrogen balance, and milk yield. Ten Holstein cows with an average milk yield of 16 kg/day, an initial body weight (BW) of 670 ± 35 kg, and an average of 17 weeks in milking were assigned to an experiment using a double 5 × 5 Latin square design. The ratio of forage/concentrate was 82:18, and the ingredients used were cactus cladodes, cassava root, corn silage, soybean meal, wheat meal, urea, and mineral premix. The intake of dry matter, organic matter, and total digestible nutrients were not influenced by the replacement levels. On the other hand, the intake of crude protein and neutral detergent fiber increased while the intake of non-fiber carbohydrates decreased with addition of CRCS. The digestibility of the nutrients was not changed as the milk yield as fat-corrected milk production and milk content of fat, protein, lactose, and total solids. The microbial protein synthesis, microbial protein efficiency, nitrogen balance, and efficiency of N in milk were not changed. Therefore, we recommend the complete replacement of cactus cladodes by cassava root and corn silage in the diets of lactating cows with an average milk yield of 16 kg/day.

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The authors would like to thank the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq), and the Commission for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES) for financing this assay.

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Correspondence to Daniel Barros Cardoso.

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All procedures were conducted in accordance with the guidelines set out by the Brazilian College of Animal Experimentation in the Code of Practice for the Care and Use of Animal for Experimental Purposes and were reviewed and approved by the Ethics Committee on Use of Animal for Research (CEUA) of the Federal Rural University of Pernambuco.

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de Albuquerque Saraiva, T., de Figueiredo Monteiro, C.C., Feitosa, E.M.S. et al. Effect of association of fresh cassava root with corn silage in replacement for cactus cladodes on dairy cow performance. Trop Anim Health Prod 52, 927–933 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11250-019-02087-7

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  • Alternative roughage
  • Non-fibrous carbohydrates
  • Milk yield
  • Forage resources