Effect of Ionophore Enriched Cold Processed Mineral Block Supplemented with Urea Molasses on Rumen Fermentation and Microbial Growth in Crossbred Cattle

De, Debasis;Singh, G.P.

  • Received : 2000.06.28
  • Accepted : 2002.03.05
  • Published : 2003.06.01


An experiment was conducted to study the effect of ionophore enriched cold processed mineral block supplemented with urea molasses on microbial growth and rumen fermentation. Twelve adult male crossbred cattle were divided into four groups on body weight basis. Animals were given wheat straw as a basal diet. The animals of group I and II were supplemented with concentrate mixture and animals of group III and IV were supplemented with cold processed urea molasses mineral block (UMMB). Thirty mg monensin/day/animal were supplemented to the animals of group II and 35 ppm monensin were incorporated in the UMMB supplemented to the animals of group IV. Dry matter (DM) intake did not differ significantly among groups. Mean rumen pH was higher in UMMB fed animals. Total volatile fatty acids (TVFA) concentration (mmole/L strained rumen liquor (SRL) in group III (113.19) was significantly (p<0.05) higher than those of group I (105.83) and II (108.74) but similar to group IV (109.34). TVFA production (mole/day) was similar in all the groups. The molar proportion of acetate was significantly (p<0.01) higher in the group I (59.56) than those of group II (51.73) and IV (55.91) but similar to group III (57.12). The molar proportion of propionate was significantly (p<0.01) higher in the monensin treated groups i.e. group II (38.38) and IV (36.26) than those of group I (27.78) and III (33.06). Butyrate molar percent was significantly (p<0.01) higher in group I (12.65) than those of group II (10.19), group III (9.83) and IV (7.84). The reduction of acetate and butyrate was due to UMMB and monensin resulted in lower A:P ratio. Average bacterial pool and bacterial production rate did not differ significantly among groups. Total N concentration (mg/100 ml SRL) was significantly (p<0.01) higher in the group I (55.30) and III (57.70) as compared to the group II (47.97) and IV (47.59). Ammonia-N concentration (mg/100 ml SRL) of group III (34.99) was significantly (p<0.01) higher than that of the group I (25.76) which was again significantly (p<0.01) higher than that of the group II (20.79) and IV (19.83) indicating slower release of ammonia due to monensin in diet. Total bacterial, cellulolytic, proteolytic bacterial and fungal count at 4 h post feeding did not differ significantly (p<0.05) among treatment groups. However, methanogenic bacterial count was significantly (p<0.01) higher in the group I (11.80) compared to the group II (8.43) which was significantly (p<0.01) higher than that of the group III (4.70) and IV (2.90). Average protozoal population was affected by both treatments. Thus feeding of UMMB and monensin in diet affected the rumen fermentation pattern towards propionate production, slower release of ammonia and reduction in methanogenic bacteria in the rumen.


Ionophor;UMMB;Rumen Fermentation


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