Effects of concentrate supplementation and genotype on milk production and nitrogen utilisation efficiency in late-lactation, spring-calving grazing dairy cows
Nitrogen utilisation efficiency
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CitationM.J. Doran, F.J. Mulligan, M.B. Lynch, A.G. Fahey, G. Rajauria, E.L. Brady, K.M. Pierce, Effects of concentrate supplementation and genotype on milk production and nitrogen utilisation efficiency in late-lactation, spring-calving grazing dairy cows, Livestock Science, Volume 261, 2022, 104962, ISSN 1871-1413, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.livsci.2022.104962.
AbstractThe study objectives were to evaluate the effects of (1) concentrate supplementation (CS), (2) cow genotype, and (3) a potential interaction between CS and cow genotype on milk production, dry matter (DM) intake (DMI) and cow nitrogen (N) utilisation efficiency (NUE) in late lactation (+208 ± 14.1 days in milk), spring-calving grazing dairy cows. The experiment was a complete randomised block design with a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement of treatments and was conducted over a 52-day period. There were two feeding strategies (pasture-only (PO) and pasture + 2.7 kg DM CS) and two genotype groups [lower milk genotype (LM; milk kg PTA = -48 ± 59.9, fat kg PTA = +7 ± 4.7 and protein kg PTA = +3 ± 3.2) and higher milk genotype (HM; milk kg PTA = +190 ± 109.7, fat kg PTA = +12 ± 5.7 and protein kg PTA = +9 ± 3.6)]. Cows in their respective genotype group were randomly assigned to one of two feeding strategies, resulting in four treatment groups (n = 12). Cows grazed full time and were allocated 17 kg DM pasture/cow per d. No interactions were observed for any parameters measured. Cows offered CS had increased daily yields of fat + protein (+0.18 kg), lactose (+0.13 kg) and ECM (+2.46 kg) compared to cows offered PO. The HM cows had increased yields of daily fat + protein (+0.13 kg) and lactose (+0.1 kg) compared to the LM cows. Cows offered CS had decreased daily protein (-0.14%) but increased lactose (+0.08%) concentration compared to cows offered PO. The HM cows had decreased daily fat (-0.2%), protein (-0.16%) and casein (-0.07%) concentration compared to the LM cows. Cows offered CS had a reduced daily pasture DMI (-1.41 kg) but an increased daily total DMI (+1.29 kg) and feed N intake (+0.085 kg) compared to cows offered PO. Cows offered CS had decreased NUE (-0.1%) compared to cows offered PO. In conclusion, offering cows 2.7 kg DM CS per day improved milk production in late lactation but resulted in a poorer NUE. The poorer NUE was due to no difference in milk N output and an increase in the partitioning of feed N to urine. The HM cows had an increased milk response to CS with respect to milk fat + protein kg compared to the MR obtained from LM cows.
FunderDepartment of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine (Ireland)
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