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South African Journal of Animal Science

Print version ISSN 0375-1589

Abstract

NKOSI, B.D.  and  MEESKE, R.. Effects of whey and molasses as silage additives on potato hash silage quality and growth performance of lambs. S. Afr. j. anim. sci. [online]. 2010, vol.40, n.3, pp. 229-237. ISSN 0375-1589.

The aim of the study was to determine the effect of whey or molasses on the fermentation quality when added to potato hash silage. In addition, lamb performance, digestibility and feed intake of diets containing potato hash silage were compared with a diet containing maize silage (MSd). Potato hash silage (treated with no additive, or whey, or molasses) and MS were produced in 210 L drums for 90 days and the fermentation quality of the silages was determined thereafter. Diets were formulated and fed ad libitum to 32 South African Dorper lambs (23.5 ± 0.873 kg live weight) for 63 days. A digestibility study was conducted during the last week of the study. The untreated potato hash silage (UPHS) was poorly fermented as indicated by higher concentrations of butyric acid, ammonia-N and pH compared to the other silages. Higher dry matter intake (DMI) and daily weight gains (218 and 250 g/d) were obtained with MSd and molasses treated potato hash silage diet (MPHSd) compared to the other diets. Nutrient digestibility was lower in the UPHS diet compared to the other dietary treatments. It was concluded that the fermentation quality of potato hash was improved with the addition of whey and molasses. Furthermore, growth performance was higher with the MSd and MPHSd than of the other treatments, suggesting that MPHSd can safely replace MSd in a lamb diet at a dietary inclusion level of 20% without any adverse effect on animal performance.

Keywords : Digestibility; dry matter; fermentation; intake; maize silage.

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