Development of feeding systems and strategies of supplementation to enhance rumen fermentation and ruminant production in the tropics
The availability of local feed resources in various seasons can contribute as essential sources of carbohydrate and protein which significantly impact rumen fermentation and the subsequent productivity of the ruminant.
Recent developments, based on enriching protein in cassava chips, have yielded yeast fermented cassava chip protein (YEFECAP) providing up to 47.5% crude protein (CP), which can be used to replace soybean meal. The use of fodder trees has been developed through the process of pelleting; Leucaena leucocephala leaf pellets (LLP), mulberry leaf pellets (MUP) and mangosteen peel and/or garlic pellets, can be used as good sources of protein to supplement ruminant feeding.
Apart from producing volatile fatty acids and microbial proteins, greenhouse gases such as methane are also produced in the rumen. Several methods have been used to reduce rumen methane.
However, among many approaches, nutritional manipulation using feed formulation and feeding management, especially the use of plant extracts or plants containing secondary compounds (condensed tannins and saponins) and plant oils, has been reported. This approach could help to decrease rumen protozoa and methanogens and thus mitigate the production of methane.
At present, more research concerning this burning issue - the role of livestock in global warming - warrants undertaking further research with regard to economic viability and practical feasibility.
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Article made possible through the contribution of Metha Wanapat et al. Biomed Central