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Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon)

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Description
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Common names 

Bermuda grass, bermudagrass, coast cross, costcross, Bahamas grass, dhoub, kiri-hiri, devil's grass, African couch, Indian couch, star grass, kweek grass [English]; herbe des Bermudes, gros chiendent, chiendent pied de poule [French]; grama, grama brava, grama común, grama de España, grama rastrera, gramilla blanca, gramilla brava, gramilla Italiana, hierba Bermuda, paja de la virgen, palo delgado, pasto Argentina, pasto bermuda, pasto de gallina, pasto de las Bermudas, pata de perdiz, pelo de conejo, zacate agrarista, zacate agujilla, zacate alicia, zacate de Bermuda, zacate de conejo, zacate de gallina [Spanish]; capim Bermuda, grama Bermuda, grama-seda [Portuguese]; kweekgras [Afrikaans]; handjesgras [Dutch]; Hundszahngras [German]; rumput bermuda, rumput minyak, rumput grinting [Indonesian]; gramigna rossa [Italian]; দূর্বা [Bengali]; 百慕达草 [Chinese]; αγριάδα [Greek]; יבלית [Hebrew]; दूब घास [Hindi]; バーミューダ グラス, バミューダグラス, ギョウギ シバ [Japanese]; ಗರಿಕೆಹುಲ್ಲು [Kannada]; കറുക [Malayalam]; அறுகு [Tamil]; cỏ chỉ, cỏ chỉ trắng, cỏ chỉ mùa khô, cỏ chỉ mùa mưa, cỏ gà [Vietnamese]

Synonyms 

Capriola dactylon (L.) Kuntze, Cynodon coursii A. Camus, Cynodon dactylon var. densus Hurcombe, Cynodon polevansii Stent, Digitaria stolonifera, Panicum dactylon L.

Description 

Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon Pers.) is a major tropical grass found in all tropical and subtropical areas. It is highly tolerant to drought and heavy grazing and therefore extremely valuable for pasture. It is also used for cut-and-carry, hay and deferred feed. It is of moderate nutritional value. Many varieties and hybrids have been developed for different cultivation conditions.

Morphology

Bermuda grass is a highly variable, hardy, long-lived perennial grass, and one of the most used warm-season forages in the world (Hacker et al., 1998). This stoloniferous and rhizomatous grass forms dense leafy mats that can reach 10-40 cm (-90 cm) high (FAO, 2012Ecocrop, 2012). Bermuda grass densely roots at the nodes. The root system mostly develops within 0-25 cm depth but can go as deep as 70-80 cm in sandy soils. The underground biomass is mostly rhizomatous. Creeping stolons spread rapidly and may be as long as 20 m, but are generally 0.5-1.5 m. Culms are numerous (8-40), usually prostrate but flowering culms can be erect or geniculated, and may be 10-90 cm high (Ecoport, 2012Quattrocchi, 2006). Bermuda grass is a leafy species. Leaf blades are blue green, 2-20 cm long, and 2-6 mm wide, smooth on the lower surface and somewhat pubescent at the upper one (Cook et al., 2005).

Varieties

There are many varieties of Bermuda grass. Seeded varieties result from the selection for desirable traits. Most of the commercial Bermuda grass varieties are products of hybridization between Cynodon dactylon subspecies.

  • Seeded varieties. Common Bermuda grass and Giant Bermuda grass are the main seeded varieties. They correspond to a wide range of genotypes and were selected for their adaptability to different cultivation conditions (Ball et al., 2002). In some usages, "common" has become synonymous with any seed-propagated Bermuda grass (Busey, 1989). Seeded varieties are outstandingly tolerant of drought and heavy grazing, two important traits for tropical forages. Their seeds are commonly mixed to make commercial blends.
  • Hybrids. Work on hybridization started in the 1940s at the Coastal Plain Experimental Station, situated in Tifton, Georgia (USA). In 1943, the first hybrid called Coastal Bermuda grass was released (Stichler et al., 1996). Since then, many others have been created at Tifton: Tifton 44, 68, 78 and 85. Tifton 85, released in the 1990s, is one of the most popular varieties of Bermuda grass. Other varieties such as Midland, Callie, Coastcross-1, Hill Farm Coastcross-1, Coastcross-2, Brazos, Alicia, Grazer, Russell, Lagrange, Zimmerly, Scheffield, Naiser, Luling, Oklan, Guymon, Quickstand and Hardie are all retailed for forage production (Hancock et al., 2010Ball et al., 2002).

The hybrid Coastal Bermuda grass variety has longer and larger leaves, stems and rhizomes. It is more resistant to drought and leaf spot, and it is immune to the root-knot nematode. Coastal Bermuda grass is twice as productive as common Bermuda grass and is easier to eradicate. It is readily grazed when 25-30 cm high. Introduction of this grass in the Southern United States sharply increased herbage production and revolutionized the livestock industry. Tifton 85, one of the most popular hybrids, is taller and leafier than many of the others. It spreads rapidly and has a much higher DM yield and nutritive value. It is more adapted to tropical areas but is less winter hardy than other hybrids (Hancock et al., 2010).

Utilization

Bermuda grass is a valuable fodder grass that can be grazed (it withstands heavy grazing) or used in cut-and-carry systems. It is useful for hay, silage and pelletizing. It may be used for soil conservation (as a soil binder) and as lawn and turf grass (Ecocrop, 2012Cook et al., 2005Hanna, 1992). Its hardiness and tolerance of extended periods of drought or flooding are positive traits, but they may help Bermuda grass to become invasive (US Forest Service, 2012GISD, 2012).

Distribution 

Bermuda grass is thought to have originated around the Indian Ocean Basin, from East Africa to India. It was introduced to all tropical and subtropical areas. It is found as far as 50°N in Europe and down to 37° in the southern hemisphere. Bermuda grass can be found at high altitudes: up to 2600 m in the tropics, and 4000 m in the Himalayas (Ecoport, 2012FAO, 2012).


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Bermuda grass is common in grasslands, lawns and pastures (FAO, 2012). It is dominant in uncultivated areas: roadsides, sea-coast sandy dunes, or along rivers and irrigated land (Ecoport, 2012). It does well on overgrazed and trampled areas (FAO, 2012; Ecoport, 2012Cook et al., 2005). It grows in areas where average annual temperatures range within 6-28°C, though it does better where daily temperatures are in the range of 17-35°C. It stops growing under 15°C. The foliage is killed at -2 to -3°C but the stand recovers from the rhizomes. Bermuda grass requires 625-1750 mm annual rainfall, but moisture levels as low as 550 mm and as high as 4300 mm are acceptable. Because of its deep rhizome, Bermuda grass is tolerant of both dry and flooding conditions (up to 7 months drought and several weeks under water) (Cook et al., 2005). Though Bermuda grass prefers deep, well-drained fertile soils, it can adapt to a wide range of soils including those that are relatively infertile, with a pH ranging from 4.3 to 8.4 (optimum > 5.5). It responds positively to N and K fertilization (Coblentz et al., 2004). It has some saline soil tolerance (but none for aluminium), hence its ability to be grown on coastal areas or on irrigated land (Ecoport, 2012FAO, 2012Cook et al., 2005). Bermuda grass is sensitive to shade and may die under medium and dense shade. It is sensitive to many pests and diseases (including rust, leaf spot and parasites) (Cook et al., 2005Hanna, 1992).

Forage management 

Bermuda grass has an outstanding spreading ability, the stolons being able to grow more than 7.5 cm/day. It is used to form dense swards, lawns and turf (Ecoport, 2012; FAO, 2012). DM yields are about 5-15 t/ha (FAO, 2012). Bermuda grass is highly responsive to N fertilization and to irrigation, with high input levels producing up to 20 t DM/ha/year (Larbi et al., 1990). Hybrid varieties are not able to produce seeds and are propagated vegetatively by sprigs (pieces of rhizomes) planted in the soil on a 90 cm grid. In fertile varieties, dehulled seeds are sown on a well-prepared, fine bed. Bermuda grass develops quickly and is highly competitive, so that many grass species are rapidly offset. Only strongly competitive legumes such as rhizoma peanut (Arachis glabrata), pinto peanut (Arachis pintoi), perennial soybean (Neonotonia wightii), townsville stylo (Stylosanthes humilis), crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum), white clover (Trifolium repens) and woolly pod vetch (Vicia villosa) can be sown with Bermuda grass (Cook et al., 2005).

Pasture and cut-and-carry systems

Bermuda grass is one of the most grazing-resistant grasses and can withstand heavy grazing once established. Nitrogen fertilizer increases its tolerance to grazing. Grazing can start once the stand is 30-40 cm high and in full bloom. Cutting/grazing height should be about 5-10 cm in order to keep a good stand density. To maintain quality, grazing pressure should be high, with short rotations under rotational grazing, or controlled with a low sward height under set-stocking management, to avoid excess pre-grazing herbage mass and lowered digestibility (Fike et al., 2003). If livestock does not consume all the pasture, the excess grass can be used to make hay (Cook et al., 2005).

Hay and haylage

Bermuda grass makes good quality hay and haylage. As a fine-stemmed leafy species, Bermuda grass cures quickly. It can be tightly packed in bales and maintain good nutritive value during storage (Hacker et al., 1998). In the USA, Bermuda grass hay is often cubed or pelleted. It should not be cut too late as its nutritive value (protein content) drops with maturity. Six cuts can be taken per year (Cook et al., 2005).

Standover and deferred feed

In the USA, Bermuda grass is known to retain its protein content during winter and may be used as deferred feed. After adequate fertilization and a rest period during late summer, standing dormant Bermuda grass is ready to be grazed during autumn and early winter (Lalman et al., 2000). Cattle should be allowed to graze the upper 2/3 of the stand as this part is much leafier and has a higher nutritive value. Livestock grazing the lower third of the grass eat mostly low value fibrous stems (Redmon, 2005Göhl, 1982).

Environmental impact 

Soil erosion control, reclamation and cover crop

As a hardy pioneer plant with strong root development, Bermuda grass helps binding bare ground in disturbed areas. Its dense root system improves soil structure and recycles nutrients. In Madagascar, dead Bermuda grass has been used as the seeding bed for direct sowing of legumes or rice as it provides nutrients to these crops (Rakotondramanana et al., 2005). Its pioneering habit and its good tolerance of saline soils make it a valuable soil binder in sandy dunes along sea coast or river banks. It is much valued in irrigated areas (FAO, 2012Quattrocchi, 2006).

Bermuda grass has shown promising ability to use swine wastewater rather than mineral N-fertilizer (Burns et al., 2009). It was effective at decontaminating the wastewater in floating vegetated mat systems placed over pig waste lagoons. Common Bermuda grass and Tifton 85 proved to be the most effective at producing biomass from highly contaminated water (Shah, 2010).

Weed potential

Bermuda grass is a very competitive species. This makes it resistant to weeds but also a threat to crops such as maize, cotton and sugarcane, or in vineyards and plantation crops (Hanna, 1992). It is considered a weed in more than 80 countries. It should not to be used in temporary pastures, for it is difficult to eradicate from arable land (Cook et al., 2005). 

Nutritional aspects
Nutritional attributes 

Bermuda grass is considered a medium quality forage. Typical chemical composition of fresh Bermuda grass is 9-16% protein, 45-85% NDF and 20-45% ADF (DM basis). Cultivars with higher OM and NDF digestibility and better nutritive value have been developed. Bermuda grass hay is usually of lower quality than the fresh forage: it contains about 10% protein, 75% NDF and 36% ADF (DM basis). Young vegetative Bermuda grass or well N-fertilized grass have higher nutritive values.

Potential constraints 

Ergotism

Under tropical humid climates, Bermuda grass is susceptible to ergot (Claviceps spp.) infestation. The mycotoxin risks associated to ergotism are negligible when forage is grazed or harvested before flowering, but the risk increases after seed heading (ISPB, 2011). The ergot alkaloids have vasoconstrictor and neurotoxic properties that result in necrosis of extremities, staggering, lameness, hyperthermia and sometimes death (Bourke, 2000Guerre, 2011).

HCN poisoning

Cases of HCN poisoning have been recorded in animals that have grazed Bermuda grass stands too soon after N fertilizer application (Cook et al., 2005Mislevy et al., 1995).

Oxalates

Though oxalate content may exceed 1% DM, no symptoms of toxicity have been reported (FAO, 2012Cook et al., 2005).

Photosensitization

Some cases of photosensitization have occurred in cattle grazing frost-damaged Bermuda grass (FAO, 2012).

Ruminants 

Bermuda grass is suitable for all ruminant species as pasture, hay and haylage. OM digestibility for the fresh forage is comprised between 45 and 65% and slightly lower for the hay. Pasture mass below 8 cm can be considered unavailable for the grazing ruminants (Alvim et al., 2001).

Pasture

Dairy cows

In Florida, under tropical conditions, annual stocking rates of 5 or 6 dairy cows/ha have been achieved under low (100 kg/ha) to high (400 kg/ha) N fertilization, resulting in extremely high milk production per ha, from 26 to 32 t milk/ha depending on the supplementation level (Alvim et al., 2001). Intake levels of Bermuda grass ranged from 9-12 kg DM/cow/day with 6 to 8 kg of concentrate, to 13-15 kg of forage DM/cow/day in late lactation with less than 3 kg of concentrate (Fike et al., 2003).

Due to its limited digestibility and energy value, Bermuda grass is rarely fed alone to lactating dairy cows, particularly in early lactation and with Holstein cows. With Holstein cows, current concentrate supplementation levels are 9, 6 and 3 kg/day in early, mid and late lactation, respectively, enabling a milk production ranging from 20-22 kg in early lactation to 10-12 kg in late lactation (Alvim et al., 2001Vilela et al., 2002). Marginal milk response to concentrate ranges from 0.8 to 1.1 kg milk per kg concentrate in the range of 3 to 6 kg (Fike et al., 2003Cardoso et al., 2009).

Beef cattle

Average daily gains of 0.3 to 0.9 kg have been achieved in unsupplemented yearling steers intensively grazing Bermuda grass pastures (Horn et al., 1979Larbi et al., 1990Prohmann et al., 2004; Corriher et al., 2007Burns et al., 2008Cruz et al., 2009). The daily BW gain is largely affected by Bermuda grass pasture quality, being close to 0.3, 0.7 and 1.0 kg at high pasture availability for low (DM digestibility < 53%), medium (53%< DM digestibility < 60%) and high (DM digestibility > 60%) quality pastures (Guerrero et al., 1984). On medium quality pasture, with 3 kg of concentrate/animal/day, daily BW gain exceeded 1.0 kg (Cruz et al., 2009). In calves grazing high quality Bermuda grass pastures, concentrate supplementation of 15 g/kg BW was sufficient to maximize BW gain (+ 0.65 kg/d) (Vendramini et al., 2007). Average daily gain per animal was 25% lower on steers grazing on Bermuda grass than on alfalfa, but, due to higher biomass productivity, the total number of grazing days per ha was 35% greater on the Bermuda grass than on alfalfa (Cassida et al., 2006). In Florida, in a full year, more than 1000 kg of BW gain/ha was achieved with a input of N and intensive grazing (Burns et al., 2008). In Brazil, 150 to 250 kg of BW gain/ha/month was achievable during the summer season (Prohmann et al., 2004). The DM intake of Angus × Hereford cows under intensive grazing conditions on high quality Bermuda grass averaged 120 g/kg BW0.75 (Horn et al., 1979).

Hay and haylage

Dairy cows

In lactating dairy cows, the replacement of 10-15% of the alfalfa hay DM in the diet with Bermuda grass hay or haylage had no effect on voluntary intake and milk production (Bernard et al., 2010Castro et al., 2010). When forage represented 60% of the diet (40% concentrate), the total replacement of alfalfa hay with Bermuda grass hay had no effect on voluntary intake, milk production and DM diet digestibility (Moreira et al., 2001b). However, when Bermuda grass replaced maize silage in the diet there was a reduction in DM intake (-3.3 kg/d), milk yield (-3.5 kg/d) and total diet DM digestibility (-9.3%) (Moreira et al., 2001b). DM intake reached 4.1% BW in Holstein cows or 3.6% BW in Jersey cows with 55% concentrate in the diet (66% of the forage as Bermuda grass hay; West et al., 1997), or 3.2% BW with 40% concentrate (Moreira et al., 2001b).

Beef cattle

Voluntary intake of Bermuda grass hay fed alone is generally between 2.0 and 2.7% BW (Lippke, 1980Hall et al., 1990; Galloway et al., 1991aGalloway et al., 1991bSun et al., 1991Garcés-Yépez et al., 1997Burns et al., 2007Burns, 2011), but lower intake levels, between 1.5 and 1.8% BW, have been observed (Ribeiro et al., 2001Itavo et al., 2002Cavalcante et al., 2004Cabral et al., 2006; Silva et al., 2007).

An average daily gain of 0.3 kg has been achieved in yearling cattle fed on Bermuda grass hay alone (Lippke, 1980Garcés-Yépez et al., 1997). Average daily gains of 0.6 kg have been achieved with 10-20% concentrate in the diet (Brake et al., 1989Garcés-Yépez et al., 1997), and a gain of 0.9 kg was obtained with 40% concentrate in the diet (Garcés-Yépez et al., 1997).

Sheep and lactating ewes

Voluntary DM intake of castrated male sheep fed only on Bermuda grass hay is close to 2.0-2.4% BW, or 50-55 g/kg BW0.75 (Aumont et al., 1995; Moreira et al., 2001a; Gonçalves et al., 2003). Voluntary intake was 20% lower for mature forage (84 days, 2.0% BW) than for younger grass (28 days, 2.4% BW) (Gonçalves et al., 2003). Average DMI decreased by 0.17 g/kg BW0.75 per day of regrowth (Aumont et al., 1995). In vivo OM digestibility of fresh or Bermuda grass hay decreased with maturity, on average by 1 or 2 percentage points per day (Aumont et al., 1995; Gonçalves et al., 2003). The OM digestibility of Bermuda grass was lower than that of alfalfa hay (51 vs. 58%), but its NDF digestibility was similar. Voluntary DMI and average daily weight gain were 24% and 31% lower for Bermuda grass hay than for alfalfa hay, respectively. Average daily weight gain of male sheep fed only on Bermuda grass hay reached 101 g per day. Voluntary DMI of Bermuda grass hay was as high as that of maize silage fed as the sole forage, without any protein supplementation (Moreira et al., 2001a).

Bermuda grass hay could be fed to early lactating ewes as the sole forage, provided that adequate energy and protein were supplied by a concentrate. Total DM intake of early lactating ewes was 2.3 kg DM/d (113 g/kg BW0.75) with a supplementation level of 28% (DM basis), and 2.7 kg DM/d (128 g/kg BW0.75) when the supplementation level was 50% (DM basis) (Araujo et al., 2008).

Goats

Voluntary intake of Bermuda grass hay by young goat kids or adult goats was close to that reported in sheep (42 to 56 g/kg BW0.75) (Coleman et al., 2003; Robinson et al., 2006; Patterson et al., 2009). Adult goats fed on Bermuda grass hay showed 50% greater voluntary intake than when fed on tall fescue hay (Festuca arundinacea) even though both forages had a similar chemical composition and DM digestibility, but intake was 25% lower than for goats fed on alfalfa hay (Robinson et al., 2006). Other comparisons between hays showed that Bermuda grass hay was well accepted despite its relatively low DM digestibility (Coleman et al., 2003Sponheimer et al., 2003).

Young meat goats kids fed on Bermuda grass hay alone achieved only low BW gains (20-60 g/d; Packard et al., 2007), or no gain (Patterson et al., 2009), particularly when compared to a complete pelleted diet or concentrate diet (BW gain of 100 to 250 g/d). Supplementing Bermuda grass hay with concentrate supplementation at 1% of BW (250-300 g DM/d) increased BW gain of kids by 70 g/d (Patterson et al., 2009).

Llamas and alpacas

Compared to goats, voluntary intake of Bermuda grass hay was lower with llamas and much lower with alpacas, though DM digestibility was higher (Sponheimer et al., 2003).

Pigs 

Bermuda grass can be included in pig diets in spite of its relatively high fibre content. Bermuda grass decreased digestibility of dietary components even at relatively low inclusion rates (10%) in finisher pigs and sows (Gomes et al., 2008bvan Kempen et al., 2002). However, Bermuda grass included at 10 or 15% in pig diets did not alter animal performance (average daily gain) and carcass traits (Gomes et al., 2008aCoffey et al., 1982). The feed:gain ratio remained similar or increased slightly, indicating that feed intake was higher when pigs were offered Bermuda grass (Gomes et al., 2008aCoffey et al., 1982). The absence of a growth depression in spite of reduced nutrient digestibility may be due to the effect of the high fibre diet, which decreases energy requirements (Schrama et al., 1998).

In Brazil, Bermuda grass has been shown to reduce feed costs. Pigs (post weaning, growing and finishing phases) were fed up to 10% (DM basis) Bermuda grass (Gomes et al., 2008aGomes et al., 2008b). In North Carolina, large scale pig production was carried out with pigs grazing mixed pastures of Bermuda grass and crab grass (Talbott et al., 2004). In India, 4-4.5 month-old pigs fed conventional feed and allowed to graze Cynodon dactylon, Stylosanthes humilis, Sehima nervosa and Heteropogon contortus for 3 hours per day had higher daily gain, higher body weight and better feed conversion efficiency than pigs fed the conventional feed only. Higher body weight was observed when the grass was pen-fed rather than grazed (Singh et al., 1998).

An experiment aiming at recycling N from pig waste by spreading it on Bermuda grass and then feeding the grass to heavy finishing pigs and gestating sows gave poor results. The digestibility of Bermuda grass was low in pigs adapted to the high fibre diet for 1 week and negative for unadapted animals. It was concluded that pigs could not use N from Bermuda grass grown on pig wastes (van Kempen et al., 2002).

Rabbits 

Fresh grass

Fresh Bermuda grass is used as a supplement to concentrates by traditional rabbit breeders in many tropical countries in Africa (Owen, 1981; Lukefahr, 1998; Mailafia et al., 2010), in Asia (Prawirodigdo, 1985; Ghosh et al., 2008; Banerjee, 2011), and in the Caribbean (Kentor, 1990). It can be distributed in either limited quantities or ad libitum, depending on its availability and on the composition of the concentrate. However, Bermuda grass used as a sole feed did not support maintenance in adult rabbits (Deshmukh et al., 1989), due to the low spontaneous feed intake of Bermuda grass by rabbits: 2.1-2.6 g/100 BW, compared to 5-7 g/100 g BW for most other fresh forages (Deshmukh et al., 1989Deshmukh et al., 1993).

Dried forage

In the 1960-1980s in the USA, the poor performance in rabbits fed dried Coastal Bermuda grass led to investigations on its potential toxicity, but these studies failed to confirm any toxicity and the reasons for the performance issues remain unexplained (University of South Carolina; Champe et al., 1983; Cheeke, 1983).

Bermuda grass hay has been used safely as a fibre source at 15-25% in the control diet in many studies on rabbit nutrition (Furlan et al., 2004; Furlan et al., 2006; Molina Hernandez et al., 2008; Scapinello et al., 2004). The inclusion rate was increased without problem up to 32% in a study on the effects of grinding (Gomes et al., 2000Rocha et al., 2000). Bermuda grass hay included at 15 or 45% as the (almost) sole source of fibre in the replacement of rice hulls in a complete balanced diet did not alter the growth rate (Gierus et al., 1993; Gierus et al., 1997). Compared to Cajanus cajan hay, Bermuda grass hay included in a complete diet resulted in similar growth performance and feed efficiency (Moura et al., 1992).

Digestibility

The following table presents the DM digestibility and digestible energy of Bermuda grass used as sole feed to adult rabbits in 2 studies.

Presentation DM digestibility % N digestibility % Digestible energy* MJ/kg DM Reference
Green forage 49.3 - 8.65 Deshmukh et al., 1993
Green forage 52.6 48.9 8.82 Deshmukh et al., 1993
Hay 45 49 8.24 Sponheimer et al., 2003

* estimated

Horses and donkeys 

Voluntary intake of Bermuda grass hay fed alone to horses was 1.7 to 2.1% BW, lower than that of alfalfa hay and Matua bromegrass hay (Bromus willdenowii) (LaCasha et al., 1999), and similar to perennial peanut hay (Arachis glabrata) (Eckert et al., 2010). The in vivo DM digestibility of Bermuda grass hay in horses ranged from 39 to 53% (LaCasha et al., 1999; Sponheimer et al., 2003; Eckert et al., 2010).

Nutritional tables

Avg: average or predicted value; SD: standard deviation; Min: minimum value; Max: maximum value; Nb: number of values (samples) used

Main analysis Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb  
Dry matter % as fed 31.3 5.9 20.0 49.6 36  
Crude protein % DM 9.8 2.3 6.3 15.8 44  
Crude fibre % DM 31.3 2.9 26.5 35.9 27  
NDF % DM 66.7 13.9 43.0 86.3 17 *
ADF % DM 36.7 7.4 20.3 44.7 20 *
Lignin % DM 4.7 1.7 3.0 9.0 10 *
Ether extract % DM 1.9 0.6 1.1 3.9 23  
Ash % DM 9.5 1.9 6.5 13.6 39  
Water-soluble carbohydrates % DM 0.8   0.5 1.2 2  
Gross energy MJ/kg DM 18.0 0.3 18.0 19.1 4 *
               
Minerals Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb  
Calcium g/kg DM 4.5 1.9 2.5 9.2 18  
Phosphorus g/kg DM 2.2 0.6 1.4 3.2 18  
Potassium g/kg DM 15.7 4.4 9.9 22.9 14  
Sodium g/kg DM 0.4 0.6 0.1 1.5 5  
Magnesium g/kg DM 1.8 0.8 1.0 3.8 13  
Manganese mg/kg DM 73   69 78 2  
Zinc mg/kg DM 44   40 47 2  
Copper mg/kg DM 8   7 9 2  
               
Ruminant nutritive values Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb  
OM digestibility, ruminants % 58.4 4.9 44.6 65.0 18  
Energy digestibility, ruminants % 55.8 3.2 54.0 61.4 4 *
DE ruminants MJ/kg DM 10.0 0.7 10.0 11.7 4 *
ME ruminants MJ/kg DM 8.1         *
Nitrogen digestibility, ruminants % 60.0 7.8 48.0 72.6 12  

The asterisk * indicates that the average value was obtained by an equation.

References

Alibes et al., 1990; Arieli et al., 1989; Arthington et al., 2005; Aumont et al., 1991; Babayemi et al., 2006; Butterworth, 1963; Caceres et al., 1986; Campos et al., 2010; CIRAD, 1991; Gill, 1970; Holm, 1971; Hussain, 2009; Khanum et al., 2007; Krueger et al., 2008; Mlay et al., 2006; Naik et al., 1998; Nasrullah et al., 2003; Prado et al., 2004; Sultan et al., 2007; Xandé et al., 1989

Last updated on 12/09/2013 17:14:10

Main analysis Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb  
Dry matter % as fed 91.5 2.7 85.8 95.7 10  
Crude protein % DM 10.2 2.2 6.3 14.7 44  
Crude fibre % DM 29.5 5.1 18.4 41.1 19  
NDF % DM 73.7 2.7 69.4 78.6 34  
ADF % DM 35.5 4.8 27.8 43.9 24  
Lignin % DM 5.9 0.6 4.7 6.9 20  
Ether extract % DM 2.7 1.7 1.4 7.0 9  
Ash % DM 8.3 1.6 5.9 12.5 36  
Gross energy MJ/kg DM 18.3         *
               
Minerals Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb  
Calcium g/kg DM 4.2   4.0 4.4 2  
Phosphorus g/kg DM 1.9   1.8 2.0 2  
Potassium g/kg DM 11.2       1  
Sodium g/kg DM 0.2       1  
Magnesium g/kg DM 1.8       1  
Manganese mg/kg DM 124       1  
Zinc mg/kg DM 25       1  
Copper mg/kg DM 3       1  
Iron mg/kg DM 102       1  
               
Ruminant nutritive values Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb  
OM digestibility, ruminants % 53.5 5.0 44.0 62.0 24  
Energy digestibility, ruminants % 50.1         *
DE ruminants MJ/kg DM 9.2         *
ME ruminants MJ/kg DM 7.4         *
Nitrogen digestibility, ruminants % 58.3 4.7 45.5 65.4 21  

The asterisk * indicates that the average value was obtained by an equation.

References

Abate et al., 1986; Arnaud et al., 2005; Brake et al., 1989; Butterworth et al., 1965; CGIAR, 2009; Forster et al., 1994; Galloway et al., 1992; Goetsch et al., 1999; Guardiola et al., 1983; Hall et al., 1990; Jones et al., 1988; Lagasse et al., 1990; Lagasse et al., 1990; Lander et al., 1936; Lanham et al., 1992; Luginbuhl et al., 1989; Mandebvu et al., 1999; Mann et al., 1987; Nsahlai et al., 1996; Rahman et al., 1968; Riddle et al., 1999; Velez et al., 1991; Vieira et al., 2008

Last updated on 12/09/2013 17:21:46

References
References 
Datasheet citation 

Heuzé V., Tran G., Delagarde R., Lebas F., 2015. Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon). Feedipedia, a programme by INRA, CIRAD, AFZ and FAO. https://feedipedia.org/node/471 Last updated on October 20, 2015, 10:33

English correction by Tim Smith (Animal Science consultant) and Hélène Thiollet (AFZ)