The digestibility of horse feeds and rations can be determined using different techniques such as calculations based on the chemical composition, in vivo or in vitro methods. The marker methods overcome difficulties like discomfort for the animals and longer experimental times encountered using the ingesta/egesta method. In field conditions, a natural indigestible marker like acid-insoluble ash (AIA), with no changes in the normal ration, could be a very useful tool for digestibility trials. A group of six standardbred horses was used in a set of seven apparent digestibility trials. The diets were based on a first-cut meadow hay added to three different cereals (barley for trials 1 and 2; oats for trials 3 and 5 and corn for trials 6 and 7), the hay : concentrate ratio being 60 : 40 or 70 : 30 on a dry matter basis. Feedstuffs and faeces were analysed to determine the AIA content, using 2N HCl or 4N HCl technique. No differences about AIA concentration were found between the two methods for means and accuracy in each diet. Digestion coefficients for each diet did not differ with AIA method, even if in some trials interfering factors consistently lowered the overall values. Consequently, the AIA 2N HCl can be considered the easier and cheaper method to state apparent digestibility in field conditions, and a good tool for digestibility trials in horses fed hay-based diets.

A comparison between the 2N and 4N HCl acid-insoluble ash methods for digestibility trials in horses.

BERGERO, Domenico;
2009-01-01

Abstract

The digestibility of horse feeds and rations can be determined using different techniques such as calculations based on the chemical composition, in vivo or in vitro methods. The marker methods overcome difficulties like discomfort for the animals and longer experimental times encountered using the ingesta/egesta method. In field conditions, a natural indigestible marker like acid-insoluble ash (AIA), with no changes in the normal ration, could be a very useful tool for digestibility trials. A group of six standardbred horses was used in a set of seven apparent digestibility trials. The diets were based on a first-cut meadow hay added to three different cereals (barley for trials 1 and 2; oats for trials 3 and 5 and corn for trials 6 and 7), the hay : concentrate ratio being 60 : 40 or 70 : 30 on a dry matter basis. Feedstuffs and faeces were analysed to determine the AIA content, using 2N HCl or 4N HCl technique. No differences about AIA concentration were found between the two methods for means and accuracy in each diet. Digestion coefficients for each diet did not differ with AIA method, even if in some trials interfering factors consistently lowered the overall values. Consequently, the AIA 2N HCl can be considered the easier and cheaper method to state apparent digestibility in field conditions, and a good tool for digestibility trials in horses fed hay-based diets.
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D. BERGERO; C. PREFONTAINE; N. MIRAGLIA; P. G. PEIRETTI
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/137515
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