Italian Journal of Animal Science
ISSN / EISSN : 1594-4077 / 1828-051X
Published by: Informa UK Limited (10.1080)
Total articles ≅ 2,892
Latest articles in this journal
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1-236; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1968170
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 336-351; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1884504
The aim of this study was to investigate interactions between milk feeding quantity (FL) and feeding frequency (FF) on intake, growth performance, rumen development and blood metabolites in dairy calves. A total of 48 Holstein calves (n = 12 calves per treatment: 6 males and 6 females) were randomly assigned to one of four treatments, including (1) two low plane of milk feeding (2 meals/d, LPM-2×; 3 meals/d, LPM-3×; total milk intake = 210 L) and two high plane of milk feeding (2 meals/d, HPM-2×; 3 meals/d, HPM-3×; total milk intake = 371 L). Calves fed HPM had higher BW, ADG, blood glucose and triglycerides concentration during the preweaning. Calves fed HPM received more ME, total DMI and ate less starter than LPM calves during preweaning. Regardless of the milk feeding quantity, with increasing FF, starter intake, total DMI and ME were reduced without a negative effect on ADG. Calves fed 3 times/d compared with 2 times/d had a lower final hip width. Calves fed HPM had higher ruminal pH and molar proportion of acetate and acetate to propionate ratio, but less molar proportion of propionate and butyrate and total VFA compared with calves fed LPM on d 35 of the study. Interaction between milk feeding level and feeding frequency was observed for plasma glucose concentration with HPM-3× calves having the greatest value at d 35 of study. In conclusion, at both levels of milk feeding, calves did not benefit from the increased feeding frequency, but calves benefitted from HPM.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1015-1028; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1943015
Two trials were conducted to investigate the effects of different corn conditioning temperature and enzyme supplementation on nutrient utilisation, growth performance, and small intestine morphology in broiler chickens. In trial one, nutrient utilisation were determined in basal diets. These diets contained unconditioned or conditioned corn (temperatures 55, 70 and 85 °C) supplemented with enzyme (Rovabio®) at the levels of 0 and 0.5 g/kg. Total excreta collection was performed with 144 chicks in 8 treatments with 6 replicates and 3 birds each, during 7–9 d. In trial two, 576 day-old broilers were distributed in 8 treatments, 6 pens and 12 chicks each. Birds were fed with diets containing conditioned corn in aforementioned temperatures and enzyme levels. A completely randomised design with 4 × 2 factorial arrangement was used in both trials. Conditioning of corn and enzyme supplementation had no significant effects on apparent metabolisable energy (AME) of corn and apparent total tract retention (ATTR) of corn nitrogen (N). In second trial, no significant differences were observed in growth performance of broilers during 1–24 d. Feed conversion ratio (FCR) in birds fed diets containing conditioned corn at 85 °C was significantly higher than that of 55 and 70 °C during 1–10 d. Corn conditioning significantly increased villus width (VW) and crypt depth (CD) but decreased VW:CD ratio. Enzyme supplementation increased jejunum villus height (VH), VW and ileal lactobacillus count and decreased pancreas weight at 24 d (p < .05). Generally, corn conditioning and enzyme supplementation did not significantly affect growth performance and carcase traits of broilers during 1–24 d, but improved histology and microbial population of small intestine.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1085-1093; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1948806
There are no published data on the risk factors associated with morbidity, mortality and passive transfer failure in Chianina beef-suckler calves. To implement prevention strategies in beef enterprises, gaining management information and identifying risk factors are essential. This cross-sectional study aimed to identify calf-level management practices and farm characteristics associated with disease incidence, mortality and serum IgG concentration in Chianina beef-suckler calves from farms in Umbria, Italy. In total, 202 Chianina beef-suckler calves aged 2–7 days from nine farms were enrolled. For each calf born, blood samples were collected and specific information on management practices and farm characteristics was obtained through farmer interviews. Serum immunoglobulin concentrations were measured using radial immunodiffusion. Mortality and morbidity data were extracted from the farm’s cow file six months after the last farm visit. The impact of farm characteristics and calf management practices on the mortality rate could not be assesses due to low case fatality in our enrolled calves (10/202). A multivariable logistic regression model indicated that prepartum vaccination against Escherichia coli, rotavirus and coronavirus, and bottle-fed colostrum were associated with serum IgG concentration. Birth season and serum IgG concentration were associated with the development of neonatal calf diarrhoea and the development of both neonatal calf diarrhoea and respiratory disease, respectively. Furthermore, family-owned farms represent an important factor related to respiratory disease episodes. The possible influence of these factors on passive immunity and neonatal calf diarrhoea and respiratory disease appearance should be considered when advising farmers.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1094-1102; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1945960
Ozone is generally used for preservation and disinfection in many different areas, especially in the food, chemical industry, and health sector due to decompose into oxygen and leave no residue. In this study, the impacts of ozone application on the microbiological of commercially produced broiler feeds were investigated. For this purpose, Aspergillus niger NRRL 326 was introduced into the starter, grower, and finisher diets. Then the effects of gaseous ozone application at different doses (0.9 and 5.6 g h−1) and durations (15 and 30 min) were investigated. A. niger and total mould-yeast numbers were decreased in the feed samples as a result of the ozone application and statistically, a significant difference was found (p < .05). In this study, ozone dose, duration, and their interactions were found to be effective on the decrease of mould-yeast counts in all treated broiler feeds. However, the effect of ozone was higher on pelleted form feeds (grower and finisher). It might be concluded that the disinfection properties of ozone can change according to the physical and chemical structure of feed material and the surface area which contact with ozone.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1317-1327; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1962749
Determining the best level of forage inclusion in diets for optimal performance of weaned calves will benefit the dairy industry greatly. This study evaluated the effect of feeding different forage to concentrate ratios on performance, behaviour, and metabolic responses of Holstein weaned calves. Forty-five Holstein female calves (70 d of age and 71.7 ± 4.4 kg body weight at trial initiation) were balanced for birth BW and randomly assigned to 1 of 3 treatments: (1) forage-to-concentrate ratio of 50:50, (2) forage-to-concentrate ratio of 35:65 and (3) forage-to-concentrate ratio of 20:80. Alfalfa hay was the sole dietary forage source. Calves were kept in individual pens until 120 d of age. Decreasing dietary forage concentration linearly increased dry matter and energy intake, and average daily gain. Body weight at d 95 and 120 linearly increased as alfalfa hay was replaced with concentrate. Ruminal pH at d 120 of age linearly decreased with greater inclusion of concentrate. Final heart girth, withers height and hip height linearly increased and final hip width tended to increase as concentrate was substituted for alfalfa hay. Plasma glucose concentration at d 95 of age linearly increased with greater concentrate levels, but the opposite was observed for β-hydroxybutyrate concentration. Increasing concentrate increased lying behaviour linearly, but decreased rumination behaviour. The results of this study indicated that feeding diets with a 20:80 forage to concentrate ratio enhanced feed intake, growth performance, and some skeletal growth parameters in the post-weaning period and increased lying behaviour and decreased rumination behaviour.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1114-1125; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1938715
This research was conducted to evaluate the influence of adding increasing levels (0, 250, 500,750, and 1000 μg/mL buffered rumen fluid) of green tea ethanol extract (GTEE) to a basal substrate (50% roughage: 50% concentrate formulated with 50% barley and 50% corn grain) on rumen fermentation, methane emissions, and population of microorganism under in vitro experiment. The potential of gas production (A), methane emission, and methane ratio (mL/mL total gas 24 h) were linearly decreased by increasing the dose of GTEE (p<.001). The control group has the highest methane emission (p<.05), while it was the lowest (p<.05) at a dose of 1000 GTEE (47.74 versus 24.23 mL/g DM). In vitro digestibility of dry and organic matter were negatively affected by GTEE (L and Q; p<.001). The addition of GTEE significantly decreased total volatile fatty acids (TVFA) and N-NH3 concentration (L, p<.001), and also changed the VFA profile compared to the control group by decreasing and increasing the acetate and the propionate proportions (p<.001). The highest decrease in total protozoa population (93%), total fungi (38%), and methanogenic archaea (95%) compared to the control group was observed at the highest dose (1000) of GTEE. The addition of GTEE stimulates the population of Prevotella ruminicola and Selenomonas ruminantium, but Butyrivibrio fibrisolvent population was inhibited, in different supplementation doses. The lowest supplementation level (250 μg/mL) seems to have the most benefits on the in vitro fermentation parameters with minimum negative effects on nutrient digestibility. It can be concluded that GTEE can potentially be used to manipulate ruminal fermentation patterns.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1156-1167; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1950054
Seven non-linear growth models were compared in the Andalusian turkey, an endangered native breed. To this aim, turkeys were weekly weighted until they reached 35 weeks. The goodness-of-fit and flexibility criteria of Brody, Von Bertalanffy, Verhulst, Logistic, Gompertz, Richards, and Sinusoidal growth models were evaluated to quantify their ability to describe the biological growth curve. Goodness-of-fit criteria were assessed comparing the mean squared error (MSE) and adjusted determination coefficient (Pseudo-R2), while the flexibility criteria of Akaike (AIC) and Bayesian information criteria (BIC) were evaluated to quantify the explanatory and predictive ability of the models tested. Afterward, all criteria were considered in a combined index to determine the most efficient model to describe and predict growth patterns. The best-fitting model for males growth was Logistic (MSE: 250,349.87; Pseudo-R2: 0.97) which also reported the best explanatory and predictive properties (AIC: 18,949.25; BIC: 18,963.24), while best goodness-of-fit criteria, explanatory and predictive capacity in females were reported for the Richards model (MSE: 144,432.45; Pseudo-R2: 0.95; AIC: 17,529.83; BIC: 17,549.02, respectively). Von Bertalanffy and Richards models underestimated the weight at early age stages, contrary to Logistic and Verhulst models. The asymptotic weight was higher in males than in females at all evaluated models, being 11,085.37 g for Logistic and 5,706.38 g for Richards, respectively. In conclusion, a marked sexual dimorphism is evident, with females reaching maturity earlier than males. The higher inflection point in males may enable their relatively easier commercial standardisation than in turkey hens.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1147-1155; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1952910
Here, we sequenced the faecal microbiome of a local pig breed by using whole-metagenome sequencing. Metagenomic data revealed that the faecal microbiome consists of a complex and intricate admixture of microbes belonging to all domains of life, including viruses. Most of sequencing reads were mapped to multiple reference sequences of Bacteria (99.35%) whereas the remaining reads (0.65%) were assigned to different microbes belonging to Archaea, Eukarya, and viruses. The predominant bacterial phylum was Firmicutes (∼86%), whereas Ascomycota division (fungi) was the most abundant eukaryotic phyla found. BLAST homology search showed that viral reads could be assigned to a total of 13 viral families of which 7 were present in all metagenomes. Bioinformatics analysis identified a catalogue of microbial genes encoding 231,428 unique proteins grouped in 3,169 functional groups and involved in 275 biochemical pathways. This study represents a first attempt to explore the faecal microbiome of a local pig breed in order to expand our knowledge about the taxonomic and functional profiles of microbes associated with this rare and endangered-maintained pig breed.
Italian Journal of Animal Science, Volume 20, pp 1135-1146; https://doi.org/10.1080/1828051x.2021.1940322
This study investigated the effects of low-cost dried yeast and multi-strain probiotics on laying hens. A total of 108 Charoen Pokphand (CP) brown hens aged 25 weeks were used in a completely randomised design (CRD) experiment involving 18 cages of six hens per replicate and six replicates per group. The hens were allocated to three groups: basal diet (BD, control), BD plus dried yeast (additive-fed), and BD plus dried yeast and probiotics (probiotic-fed). The hens were fed the BD for 2 weeks, the experimental diet for 4 weeks, and the BD for 4 weeks, and the ends of these periods were termed before feeding (BF), during feeding (DF) and after stopping feeding (ASF). At DF, the additive-fed group showed the highest egg production and % albumen, and at ASF, the Haugh unit (HU) was higher than that of the probiotic-fed group. At DF, the probiotic-fed group exhibited the most intense yolk colour and the highest eggshell thickness. Only the probiotic-fed group produced jumbo and extra-large size eggs. The expression of the immune response-related genes IL-1β, IL-2, IFNγ and HSP90 did not differ among the groups and feeding periods with the exception of the IL-2 level of the additive-fed group at ASF, which was significantly lower than that of the control. Thus, dried yeast delivered probiotics effectively and thereby improved the egg production and quality and the immune response, and the combination of yeast with probiotics induced synergistic increases in the yolk colour and egg size (p < .05, .01).