Effect of replacing alfalfa hay with Leucaena leucocephala (L. Leucocephala) leaves on in vitro gas production, digestibility and in situ degradability in buffalo
Acta Scientiarum: Animal Sciences
. This study was performed to investigate the effect of replacing alfalfa hay by L. leucocephala leaves in proportions of 25, 50 and 100% on in vitro gas production (GP) parameter, digestibility and in situ degradability in buffalo. Results showed that the volume of GP at 2 to 12 hours after incubation was significantly affected by replacing alfalfa hay with L. leucocephala leaves. In vitro digestibility of organic matter (OMD) differed significantly between treatment as it declined by
... g the alfalfa hay substitution rate from 25 to 100%. The microbial crude protein (MCP) differed significantly between treatments and was the greatest of 589 and 599 mg g-1 of dry matter (DM) when L. leucocephala leaves replaced alfalfa hay at 25 and 50%. The in vitro digestibility of DM (IVDMD) increased significantly at 50% L. leucocephala replacement rate. Moreover, substituting alfalfa hay by L. leucocephala had a significant effect on the in situ degradability parameters. The insoluble but potentially degradable fraction (B) and potential of degradability (A+B) significantly increased for treatment contain 50% L. leucocephala leaves. The effective degradability (ED) was significantly different between dietary treatments and was the greatest when alfalfa hay was replaced by 25 and 50% L. leucocephala. In conclusion, L. leucocephala leaves can substitute 25 to 50% of dietary alfalfa hay in buffalo rations without effect on rumen efficiency.