Effects of dietary inclusion levels of a low lignin hull, high-oil groat oat on the performance, carcass characteristics and rumen fermentation characteristics of feedlot cattle
Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects of dietary inclusion level of a low lignin hull, high-oil groat (CDC SO-I) oat on the performance, carcass characteristics and rumen degradation characteristics of feedlot cattle. In the first trial, 200 crossbred steers (average weight of 427.3 ± 22.4 kg) were allocated to 20 pens. Five treatments, formulated by replacing barley with increasing levels of CDC SO-I oat (Barley grain:CDC SO-I oat ratios of 100:0; 75:25; 50:50; 25:75 and 0:100 ; DM basis) were used. Four pens were randomly allocated to each treatment diet. Over the entire study there was a linear decrease (P< 0.01) in DMI and ADG with increasing inclusion level of CDC SO-I oat, whereas feed efficiency (gain:feed) decreased (P= 0.03) quadratically. Days on feed also increased (P= 0.03) quadratically for the steers fed the higher levels of CDC SO-I oat. Increasing the inclusion level of CDC SO-I oat in the diet also decreased (P< 0.01) carcass weight, dressing percentage and grade fat linearly. However, there was no effect of treatment on rib eye area and lean yield percentage. There was no significant effect of treatment on marbling score. While the results of this trial point to a negative effect of CDC SO-I oat on finishing performance, there were minimal differences between cattle fed 100% barley as the concentrate versus those fed 75% barley: 25% oat blend. Trial 2 involved a metabolism trial to determine the effect of CDC SO-I oat inclusion level on rumen fermentation parameters of 5 fistulated heifers fed the same diets used in Trial 1. A 5 × 5 Latin square experiment design was used. Rumen degradation parameters (rumen pH, VFA, osmolality and ammonia nitrogen levels) and feeding behavior (time spent eating, ruminating, chewing and drinking) were measured. Mean rumen pH for the barley-based diet was 5.88 which was not different (P> 0.05) than the mean pH of 5.5 for the oat-fed cattle. Treatment did not affect (P> 0.05) time spent below pH cutoff values of 5.8, 5.5 and 5.2. No effect of oat inclusion level (P> 0.05) was observed on total VFA levels, molar proportion of individual fatty acids and osmolality while isobutyrate (P= 0.05) and ruminal ammonia nitrogen concentrations decreased linearly (P= 0.02) with the higher inclusion of CDC SO-I oat. Time spent eating was linearly (P< 0.01) increased with higher inclusion level of CDC SO-I oat. Over all, the results of this study indicate that the replacement of barley by CDC SO-I oat in finishing diets decreases dry matter intake and as a result leads to reduced ADG, increased days on feed and lower slaughter and carcass weights. The reduced performance might be the result of higher fat content, high hull and/or faster degradation rate of oat starch leading to subacute ruminal acidosis in cattle fed higher levels of oat. However, replacing barley with CDC SO-I oat does not significantly change the rumen environment. The results of this study indicate that CDC SO-I oat can be successfully included up to a maximum level of 25% without any adverse effect on performance and carcass characteristics in the diets of finishing cattle.
DegreeMaster of Science (M.Sc.)
DepartmentAnimal and Poultry Science
ProgramAnimal and Poultry Science
SupervisorMcKinnon, John J.
CommitteeKorber, Darren R.; Yu, Peiqiang; Christensen, David A.; Lardner, Herbert; Mutsvangwa, Timothy
Copyright DateFebruary 2010
volatile fatty acids
rumen degradation characteristics
CDC SO-I oat