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Nutrition during live export of cattle

Accioly, J.M., Beatty, D.T., Barnes, A.L., Pethick, D.W., Taylor, E.G., Tudor, G.D., White, C.L., Maloney, S.K., McCarthy, M.R., Pluske, J.R. and Costa, N.D. (2003) Nutrition during live export of cattle. Recent Advances in Animal Nutrition in Australia, 14 . pp. 49-56.

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Abstract

This paper reports work aimed at improving performance and welfare of cattle during live export for long periods aboard ship. Roughage quality was manipulated in pellet diets to promote better nutritional performance and reduced nitrogen excretion. The type of pellet binder us manipulated to decrease urinary pH and consequent ammonia volatilisation. Rooms were established to simulate heat and humidity loads during live export, and feed and water intake and liveweight of Bos taurus and Bos indicas cattle were monitored in these conditions. Good quality roughage decreased estimated total nitrogen excretion and still maintained cost—effective liveweight gain. Lime produced alkaline urinary pH. Use of gypsum instead of lime, or addition of acid salts such as ammonium chloride or calcium chloride to lime, acidified urinary pH. These dietary manipulations of roughage quality and acid salts reduced atmospheric ammonia under simulated export environments but lucerne diets produced high atmospheric ammonia. Nutritional performance of cattle can be improved cost-effectively by diets containing good quality roughage instead of straw. Atmospheric ammonia can be reduced by addition of acidifying salts such as calcium chloride to export diets. Under high heat and humidity loads the feed intake of B. Taurus decreased, the feed intake of B. indicus did not change, but the water intake of both species increased. B. indicas rapidly recovered any liveweight lost under high heat and humidity within six days of recovery but B. Taurus cattle did not. B. indicas cattle cope significantly better with high heat and humidity loads than B. taurus cattle.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Publisher: University of New England
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/21111
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