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Anim Sci J. 2012 Aug;83(8):585-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1740-0929.2011.00996.x. Epub 2012 Jan 30.

Effect of replacing corn with brown rice in a total, mixed, ration silage on milk production, ruminal fermentation and nitrogen balance in lactating dairy cows.

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NARO Institute of Livestock and Grassland Science, Nasushiobara, Tochigi, Japan.


Nine multiparous Holstein cows were used in a replicated 3 × 3 Latin square design to determine the effects of substituting corn grain with brown rice (BR) grain in total mixed ration (TMR) silage on milk yield, ruminal fermentation and nitrogen (N) balance. The TMR silages were made from the ensiling of TMR containing (dry matter basis) 50.1% forage in rice silage and corn silage combination, and 49.9% concentrate. The grain portion of the diets contained 31.2% steam-flaked corn, 31.2% steam-flaked BR or an equal mixture of corn and BR. Dietary treatments did not affect dry matter intake, milk yield and milk fat, protein and lactose yields. The ruminal pH and total volatile fatty acid concentrations were not affected by dietary treatment. The urinary N excretion decreased linearly (P < 0.01) in response to increased levels of BR, with no dietary effect on N intake, N secretion in milk and fecal N excretion. Our results indicate that steam-flaked BR is a suitable replacement for steam-flaked corn in dairy cow diets, and that it can be included in rations to a level of at least 31.2% of dry matter without adverse effects on milk production, when cows were fed rice silage and corn silage-based diets.

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