Digesta kinetics, energy intake, grazing behavior, and body temperature of grazing beef cattle differing in adaptation to heat

J. E. Sprinkle, J. W. Holloway, B. G. Warrington, W. C. Ellis, J. W. Stuth, T. D.A. Forbes, L. W. Greene

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

The objective of this study was to determine whether digesta kinetics, energy intake (EI, kcal ME intake·kg-.75·d-1), grazing behavior, or body temperature differed by breed, lactational state, or season of the year among cattle presumed to vary in adaptability to the subtropics. Two-year-old lactating and nonlactating Brahman × Angus (BA; n = 5, n = 5), Tuli × Angus (TA; n = 5, n = 4), and Angus (A; n = 4, n = 4) cows were used. During both early (ES) and late summer (LS), lactating cattle vs nonlactating cattle had greater gastrointestinal tract load (CM2) and EI (P < .01), although passage rate did not differ (P > .48). During LS, lactating cattle had decreased early morning rectal temperatures (P < .05) and spent more time grazing during the day compared with nonlactating cattle (P < .001). Among breeds, A had the largest CM2 (P < .01 compared with BA and P = .068 compared with TA) and accumulated the greatest heat during the day (P < .05). Due to greater daytime shading (P < .01) and less daytime grazing (P < .05), A had lower (P < .05) early morning and comparable (P > .26) late afternoon rectal temperatures compared with BA and TA. With data pooled over both grazing trials, BA cattle had the smallest CM2 (P < .01), and in ES they spent the least amount of time in the shade (P < .001). The TA spent more time in the shade than did BA (P < .001) during ES and less during LS (P < .001) and had similar (P > .28) early morning rectal temperatures compared with BA during ES and LS. During LS, TA spent more time in the sun and less time in the shade than did either A or BA (P < .001). During ES, EI did not differ among breeds (P > .50). During LS, EI for lactating A was greater than for BA and TA (P < .05), and EI for nonlactating BA was less than for A and TA (P < .05). Bite rate per minute for lactating cattle during ES was reduced (P < .03) by increased body condition score. Tuli × Angus cattle appear to be comparable to BA with respect to heat adaptation. It appears that EI demands are greater in a hot environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1608-1624
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of animal science
Volume78
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2000
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Beef Cattle
  • Breeds
  • Grazing Behavior
  • Kinetics
  • Temperature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Digesta kinetics, energy intake, grazing behavior, and body temperature of grazing beef cattle differing in adaptation to heat'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this