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Title: Effect of silage from ryegrass intercropped with winter or common vetch for grazing dairy cows in small-scale dairy systems in Mexico
Authors: Hernández Ortega, Martha
Heredia Nava, Darwin
Espinoza Ortega, Angelica
Sánchez Vera, Ernesto
Arriaga Jordán, Carlos Manuel
Keywords: small-scale dairy systems
annual ryegrass–vetch silage
maize silage
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Tropical Animal Health and Production June 2011, Volume 43, Issue 5, pp 947-954
Citation: Hernández-Ortega, M., Heredia-Nava, D., Espinoza-Ortega, A., Sánchez-Vera, E., & Arriaga-Jordán, C. M. (2011). Effect of silage from ryegrass intercropped with winter or common vetch for grazing dairy cows in small-scale dairy systems in Mexico. Tropical Animal Health and Production, 43(5), 947–54. doi:10.1007/s11250-011-9788-2
Abstract: The objective was to determine the effect of including silages of annual ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum) intercropped with winter vetch (Vicia villosa) (ARG-VV) or with common vetch (Vicia sativa) (ARG-VS) compared with maize silage (MS) on milk yield and milk composition of dairy cows grazing cultivated perennial ryegrass–white clover pastures with supplemented concentrate during the dry season. Six Holstein dairy cows with a mean yield of 19.0 kg/cow/day at the beginning of the experiment were randomly assigned to a 3×3 repeated Latin square. Treatments were: 8 h/day intensive grazing, 3.6 kg of dry matter (DM) per cow per day of concentrate plus MS, and ARGVV or ARG-VS ad libitum at a stocking rate of 3.0 cows/ha for three experimental periods of 3 weeks each. Milk yield (MY) and milk composition, live weight and body condition score as well as silage and concentrate intakes were recorded during the third week of each experimental period, and pasture intake was estimated indirectly from utilised metabolisable energy. Economic analysis was obtained by preparing partial budgets. There were no statistical differences (P>0.10) in MY, milk fat or protein content nor for live weight, but there was significant difference (P<0.10) in body condition score. There were non-statistical differences in silage DM intake (P<0.11); however, significant differences (P<0.10) were obtained for estimated grazed herbage intake whilst no differences for total DM intake. Slightly higher economic returns (10%) were obtained with ARG-VS over MS, and this was 7% higher than ARG-VV. It is concluded that ARG-VS could be an option for complementing grazing for smallscale dairy production systems in the dry season as it is comparable to MS in animal performance and slightly better in economic terms.
ISSN: 1573-7438
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