Angie R. Poliquit and Serena L. Sanchez
Twelve male growing lambs were used in a randomized complete block design to determine the effects of feeding liquid acid whey (LAW) on the performance of the animal, its dry matter intake, nutrient digestibility, weight gain and ruminal pH. Animals received a diet consisting of Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum, Schumacher). Treatments were Napier grass plus concentrate, Napier grass plus LAW and Napier grass plus concentrate plus LAW. Individual dry matter intake (DMI), biweekly weight gain (WG) and ruminal pH were measured. Diet digestibility was determined using the total collection method. Results showed that LAW increased (p<0.05) WG and diet digestibility (dry matter, organic matter and crude protein). Liquid acid whey had an average digestibility of 54.41% for dry matter, 83.94% for organic matter and 87.56% for crude protein. Ruminal pH two hours after feeding was stable for animals with LAW alone. However, DMI was similar (p>0.05) among treatments. It can be concluded that including LAW in the diet significantly improved WG, diet digestibility and ruminal pH without affecting DMI.
Keywords: lamb, acid whey, supplement, dry matter intake, ruminal pH, digestibility