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Fukumoto et al., 2007. Rev. Bras. Zootec., 36 (2): 471-479

Document reference 
Fukumoto, N. M. ; Damasceno, J. C. ; Cortes, C. ; Paine, R. C. ; Queiroz, M. F. S. ; dos Santos, G. T. ; Matsushita, M., 2007. Use of n-alkanes to estimate intake and digestibility of signalgrass and forage peanut in sheep. Rev. Bras. Zootec., 36 (2): 471-479
Alternative title 

Consumo e digestibilidade da matéria seca de fenos de braquiária decumbens e amendoim forrageiro em ovinos estimados por meio de n-alcanos


The objective of this trial was to use n-alkanes to estimate dry matter intake (DMI) and DM digestibility in sheep. It was also of particular interest to compare two methodologies of fecal collection (total collection vs. grab samples) as well as to identify which n-alkanes best estimate DMI and DM digestibility. Twenty animals were assigned to a completely randomized design and were fed diets containing different proportions of forage peanut (Arachis pintoi Koprov & Gregory cv. Amarillo) and signalgrass hays [Brachiaria decumbens, (Stapf), Webster] (0, 15, 30, 45 and 60% of forage peanut; DM basis). The experiment lasted 18 days with 10 days for diet adaptation, three days for marker administration (C32 in cellulose pellets), and five days for fecal collection. Data were submitted to analysis of variance and observed and estimated means were compared by t test. Fecal grab samples were collected six times daily at 4 hours intervals (9:00, 13:00, 17:00, 21:00, 01:00 and 05:00) for five consecutive days. The internal alkanes C31, C33, and C31 + C33 were used for estimating DMI while DM digestibility was estimated by C33, C35, and C33 + C35. Results showed that reliable estimation of DM digestibility was obtained by using the internal alkane C33 corrected for fecal recovery. The combination of the internal alkanes C31 + C33 resulted in the best estimation of DMI with no need for fecal recovery correction. In addition, only one daily fecal grab sample (9 h or 13 h) was necessary to accurately estimate DMI.

Citation key 
Fukumoto et al., 2007