Behaviors of beef cattle fed crude glycerol as a replacement for sorghum grain
Kaique Moreira Dias, Lorena Martins Oliveira, Matheus Silva Rodrigues, Rowberta Teixeira dos Santos, Tiago do Prado Paim, Eduardo Rodrigues de Carvalho
The study of the animal behavior is a useful tool to comprehend the performance of beef animals finished in feedlots. Twenty-eight non-castrated Nellore males with initial body weight of 441 kg and 21.5 months of age were randomly assigned to receive a diet containing either sorghum grain or crude glycerol as energy sources, and housed in individual (twelve animals) or collective pens (16 animals in four pens) at the School-Farm of IF Goiano (Iporá Campus). The experiment lasted 98 days (14 for adaptation and 84 for data collection). Feeding behaviors (eating, rumination, and resting) were determined every 14 days for one-hour intervals in four times post-feeding (0, 1, 5, and 9 hours). Feed sorting was evaluated every 14 days in three times post-feeding (4, 10, and 24 hours). Time spent eating was reduced (P<0.05) by crude glycerol in comparison with the sorghum grain diet (18.19 vs. 12.29 minutes/hour, sorghum vs. glycerol, respectively), while animals fed crude glycerol increased (P<0.05) the time spent resting compared with sorghum grain-fed animals (26.23 vs. 32.85 minutes/hour, sorghum vs. glycerol, respectively). Substituting sorghum grain with crude glycerol increased (P<0.05) the preference for long (44.77 vs. 106.66%, sorghum vs. glycerol, respectively), medium (64.95 vs. 105.78%, sorghum vs. glycerol, respectively), and short (88.57 vs. 101.29%, sorghum vs. glycerol, respectively) particles, whereas sorghum grain increased (P<0.05) the preference for fine particles of the diet (112.36 vs. 100.03%, sorghum vs. glycerol, respectively). Crude glycerol can be recommended as a replacement for sorghum grain in rations fed to beef cattle.
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