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Trop Anim Health Prod. 2016 Apr;48(4):693-8. doi: 10.1007/s11250-016-0999-4. Epub 2016 Feb 22.

Effects of inclusion levels of banana (Musa spp.) peelings on feed degradability and rumen environment of cattle fed basal elephant grass.

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Department of Agricultural Production, Makerere University, P. O. Box 7062, Kampala, Uganda.
Department of Agricultural Production, Makerere University, P. O. Box 7062, Kampala, Uganda.
Department of Animal Nutrition and Management, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P. O. Box 7070, 750 07, Uppsala, Sweden.


The effect of feeding varying banana peeling (BP) levels on rumen environment and feed degradation characteristics was evaluated using three rumen fistulated steers in four treatments. The steers were fed BP at 0, 20, 40, and 60% levels of the daily ration with basal elephant grass (EG) to constitute four diets. Maize bran, cotton seed cake, and Gliricidia sepium were offered to make the diets iso-nitrogenous. The nylon bag technique was used to measure BP and EG dry matter (DM), crude protein (CP), and neutral detergent fiber (NDF) degradabilities at 0, 6, 12, 24, 48, 72, 96, and 120 h. Rumen fluid samples were collected to determine pH and volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentrations. Effective DM, CP, and NDF degradabilities of BP ranged between 574 and 807, 629-802, and 527-689 g/kg, respectively, being lower at higher BP levels. Elephant grass degradability behaved similarly with relatively high effective CP degradability (548-569 g/kg) but low effective DM and NDF degradability (381-403 and 336-373 g/kg, respectively). Rumen pH and VFA reduced with increasing BP in the diets. Rumen pH dropped to 5.8 and 5.9 at the 40 and 60% BP feeding levels, respectively. Banana peelings were better degraded than EG but higher BP levels negatively affected feed degradability and rumen environment.


Banana peelings; Degradability; Elephant grass; Rumen pH; Volatile fatty acids

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