When up to 20 % of crab meal was fed to calves no differences in gain, feed intake or feed efficiency were observed (Patton et al., 1975).
In ruminant animals, crab meal was tested in both growing and lactating cattle. Concentrate mixtures containing up to 30% of crab meal that was fed to both steers and heifers didn’t depress performance (Brundage, 1986). Decreased intake and growth was observed when crab meal was fed at 15 and 35 % levels to beef replacement heifers and calves (Laflamme, 1988). Crab meal was found to be somewhat unpalatable and as the level (12, 24, 36 %) in the diet of growing beef steers increased feed consumption declined (Nicholson et al., 1996). Only slight differences were observed when crab meal replaced soybean oil meal in lactating dairy cattle (Brundage et al., 1979). As crab meal was used to replace soybean meal in the diets of dairy cattle, milk production declined (Brundage, 1981). Crab meal when fed to dairy cattle (0, 7.5, 15, 22.5, 30%), decreased intake, with some cows completely rejecting concentrates that contained 22.5 and 30 % crab meal (Brundage et al., 1984). No off flavors in milk were observed when crab meal was fed to dairy cattle (Brundage et al., 1983). Crab meal was found to have some buffering effect (Nicholson et al., 1996).
Crude protein fraction of crab meal was found to be highly resistant to rumen degradability, with only 18 % of CP disappearing from nylon bag when placed in rumen for 24 hours. Rumen Digestible Dry Matter = 34.3 % , DCP = 69.6 % (Nicholson et al., 1996).