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Leucaena leaf hay (Leucaena leucocephala cv Peru) as protein supplement for Malawian goats fed chopped maize stover

James L. L. Banda and John A. Ayoade
Department of Livestock Production
Faculty of Agriculture, University of Malawi
P O Box 219, Lilongwe, Malawi


Summary
Introduction
Materials and methods
Results and discussion
Acknowledgments
References

Summary

Four male Malawian local goats weighing about 16 kg each were used in a 4 x 4 latin square design experiment to investigate the effect of Leucaena leaf hay (91.9% DM, 25.8% CP) supplementation on the voluntary intake and digestibility of maize stover (93.1% DM, 4.4% CP). The treatments were: (A) ad libitum maize stover (AS); (B) A + 100 g Leucaena hay/goat/day; (C) A + 200 g Leucaena hay/goat/day (LS 200); (D) A + 300 g Leucaena hay/goat/day (LS 300).

With increasing levels of Leucaena hay supplementation, daily water intake increased significantly (P<0.05), total dry matter increased (P<0.01) from 176.4 g/day to 393.0 g/day, daily crude protein intake increased (P<0.01) from 7.5 g/day to 66.2 g/day and daily maize stover dry matter intake decreased (P>0.05) from 176.4 g/day to 163.0 g/day.

The apparent digestibility coefficients for organic matter and crude protein were significantly (P<0.05) higher from treatments LS 200 and LS 300 compared with treatment AS.

Introduction

Supplementation with high protein forages has been shown to increase the efficiency of utilization of crop residues by ruminants (Most and Butterworth, 1983; Kang et al, 1982). Leucaena leucocephala is a tropical forage legume which is rich in protein and which has consequently become important in the world of research as a protein supplement for ruminants fed poor quality roughages such as maize stover (Jones, 1979; Devendra, 1983, 1984). The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of Leucaena leaf hay on the intake and digestibility of maize stover by Malawian local goats.

Materials and methods

Four male Malawian local goats (about 16 kg each) were used in a 4 x 4 latin square design experiment lasting 56 days. At the beginning of the experiment, the animals were drenched with Ranide (Merke, Sharpe & Dohme) to ensure freedom from endoparasites and were then confined in individual metal crates throughout the experimental period. The treatments were: (A) ad libitum chopped maize stover (AS); (B) A + 100 g Leucaena hay/goat/day (LS 100); (C) A + 200 g Leucaena leaf hay/goat/day (LS 200); (D) A + 300 g Leucaena leaf hay/goat/day (LS 300). The experiment was divided into four 14-day periods, each consisting of a 9-day preliminary period followed by a 5-day measurement period. The Leucaena leaf hay was given to the animals at 08.00 h daily and the maize stover was offered 3 hours later. No mineral supplements were given and clean drinking water was made available daily. Feeds (both offered and refused) and faecal samples were analysed for dry matter, ash and crude protein using AOAC 1970 procedures. Data were compared using the Duncan's multiple range test.

Results and discussion

Proximate analyses of the maize stover and Leucaena leaf hay used are shown in Table 1. The data on voluntary intakes of goats fed chopped maize stover as affected by Leucaena leaf hay supplementation are presented in Table 2.

Table 1. Proximate analysis of feeds used in the experiment (on dry matter basis).


Maize stover

Leucaena leaf hay

Dry matter (%)

93.13

91.95

Organic matter (%)

94.71

89.30

Crude protein (%)

4.38

25.38

There were significant differences (P<0.05) between treatments in daily water intake. The range was from 3.37 to 6.05% of bodyweight per day. Treatment A was significantly (P<0.05) lower than the other treatments, but there were no significant (P>0.05) differences between treatments B. C and D. Increasing Leucaena leaf hay supplementation decreased (P>0.05) the daily stover dry matter intake expressed as g/day or g/kg W 0.75/day or kg/100 kg bodyweight. This could have been due to substitution effects. However, increased Leucaena leaf hay supplementation significantly (P<0.01) raised the total daily dry-matter intake by goats fed maize stover. This is similar to the findings of Hulman and Preston (1981) who reported a significant increase in daily total dry matter intake in ruminants when sugar-cane was supplemented with Leucaena forage. Treatment C seemed to be the level of Leucaena supplement (200 g Leucaena hay/goat/day) that resulted in optimal total dry-matter intake (41.74 g/kg W 0.75/day) (Table 2). The results reported in Table 2 indicate significant (P<0.01) increases in the daily crude protein intakes (7.51-66.19 g/day or 0.89-8.36 g/kg W 0.75/day). The optimum Leucaena leaf hay supplementation (treatment C) constitutes approximately 33.3% of the total diet. Cochran et al (1984) reported that Leucaena forage can be used successfully at levels of 30-40% of the total diet of goats consuming poor quality roughage.

Leucaena leaf hay supplements had no significant (P>0.05) effect on dry matter digestibility; however, the values increased from 45.77% to 54.27% with Leucaena leaf hay supplementation.

Table 2. Voluntary intakes of goats fed chopped maize stover as affected by leucaena leaf hay supplementation.

 

Level of leucaena leaf hay supplementation

0g

100g

200g

300g

Daily free water intake






kg

*0.57b

*0.75ab

*1.00ab

*1.02a


kg/100 kg body weight

*3.37b

*4.88ab

*6.05a

*5.65a

Daily dry matter intake (stover)






g

176.35

171.54

171.83

163.12


kg/100 kg body weight

1.03

1.03

1.02

0.89


g/kg BW0.75

20.81

20.69

20.54

18.34

Daily dry matter intake (total)






g

176.35b

260.26b

348.15a

393.01a


kg/100 kg body weight

1.03c

1.58b

2.08a

2.15a


g/kg BW0.75

20.81c

31.65b

41.74a

44.13a

Daily crude protein intake






g

7.50c

30.72b

53.11a

66.18a


g/kg BW0.75

0.88d

3.77c

6.48b

8.36a

Means followed by different letters in the same row differ significantly (P<0.01) or *(P<0.05).

Organic matter digestibility was significantly (P<0.05) increased from 59.23% to 75.95%, and crude protein digestibility (P<0.05) increased from -50.58% to 55.4% with Leucaena leaf hay supplementation. However, there were no significant (P>0.05) differences among treatments B. C and D (Table 3). The increased organic matter and crude protein digestibilities with Leucaena leaf hay supplementation obtained in the present study agrees with the findings of Devendra (1984) who reported a significant increase in organic matter and crude protein digestibilities by replacing rice straw with 30% Leucaena leaf hay in goats fed rice straw alone.

Table 3. Nutrient digestibilities of chopped maize stover by goats as affected by Leucaena leaf hay supplementation.

 


Level of supplementation

0g

100g

200g

300g

Dry matter (%)

45.77a

50.86a

47.97a

54.26a

Organic matter (%)

59.23b

71.82b

66.52b

75.94a

Crude protein (%)

50.58b

36.91a

42.02a

55.40a

Means followed by different letters in the same row differ significantly (P<0.05).

The results of the study reported here indicate that Leucaena leaf hay can be successfully used as a protein supplement for Malawian local goats commonly fed low quality forages/roughages such as maize stover, bean pods and rice straw during the dry season.

Acknowledgments

The authors thank Messrs Owen Adiyele, Manombo Mwale and M. Kayange for their assistance. J. A. Ayoade acknowledges financial support from the University of Malawi through the research and publications committee.

References

Cochran R C, Delcarpio A J. Parker C F. Hallford B M, Vankeuren R W. Dehority B A, Vidal H and Cordero, 1984. Growth response of Peruvian Criollo goats consuming varying levels of Acacia mancrascauth, Leucaena leucocephala and corn stalks. Nutrition abstracts and reviews Series B 54 (8) 495.

Devendra C, 1983. The nutritive value of Leucaena leucocephala (cv Peru) in balance and growth studies with goats and sheep. Nutrition abstracts and reviews Series B 53 (12) 800.

Devendra C, 1984. Physical treatment of rice straw for goats and sheep and the response to substitution with variable levels of cassava (Manihot esculente), leucaena (Leucaena leucocephala) and gliricidia (Gliricidia maculata) forages. Nutrition abstracts and reviews Series B 54 (9) 487.

Hulman B and Preston T R. 1981. Leucaena as a source of protein for growing animals fed whole sugarcane and urea. Tropical Animal Production 6:318-321.

Jones R J. 1979. The value of Leucaena leucocephala as a feed for ruminants in the tropics. World Animal Review 31:12-22.

Kang H S. Yoo T S and Choi S Y. 1982. A study on the nitrogen metabolism and energy digestibility with the Korean native goats fed acaicia leaf hay. Nutrition abstracts and reviews Series B 52 (9) 553.

Mosi A K and Butterworth M H. 1983. Use of Trifolium tembense to enhance crop residue utilisation by ruminants. ILCA Newsletter 2(4):5-6.


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