Different supplement treatments for lactating meat goat does grazing grass/forb pastures

TitleDifferent supplement treatments for lactating meat goat does grazing grass/forb pastures
Publication TypeWeb Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsGoetsch, AL, Detweiler, GD, Wang, Z, Hayes, J, Tesfai, K, Gipson, TA
Series TitleJournal of Animal Science
Type of Medium(E-Supplement 3)
AbstractLactating meat goats grazing 0.4-ha grass/forb pastures were used to determine effects on performance of different supplement treatments. Boer does (32) with 1 or 2 kids were used in a study with 4 4-wk periods (PR) starting 22 ± 2.0 d after birth. Two groups were subjected to treatments of no supplementation (CO), access to a 20% CP supplement block (SB), and placement in a supplement pasture with mimosa (Albizia julibrissin) trees for 6 h 1 d/wk (1X) or twice weekly for 3 h/d (2X). All groups received access to the same mineral-vitamin supplement. Available forage DM in non-supplement pastures averaged 3,477, 3,448, 3,353, 2,802, and 2,423 kg/ha initially and after PR 1, 2, 3, and 4, respectively; hand-plucked forage samples averaged 15 and 67% CP and NDF, respectively. Treatment did not affect doe ADG (-23, -42, -23, and -15 g; SE = 11.5), FAMACHA score, or fecal egg count, although kid ADG in the first 3 PR differed (P < 0.05) between type of supplement and frequency of supplement pasture access (121, 111, 120, and 134 g for CO, SB, 1X, and 2X, respectively; SE = 3.3). Spanish does (32) nursing 2 kids were used in a study with 3 4-wk PR starting 66 ± 0.8 d after kidding. The same CO and SB treatments were employed, but access to supplement pastures was for 24 h 1 d/wk (1X) or 2 d for 6 h/d (2X). Forage DM averaged 1,530, 842, 791, and 750 kg/ha initially and after PR 1, 2, and 3, respectively), and 0.6 kg/d (as fed) per doe of grass hay (7 and 67% CP and NDF, respectively) was fed after PR 1. Hand-plucked forage samples averaged 14 and 64% CP and NDF, respectively. Treatment did not affect doe or kid FAMACHA score. Kid ADG in PR 1 and 2 was not affected by treatment. Doe ADG was affected by supplementation (P < 0.05) and supplement type (P < 0.09) (-44, -33, -23, and -12 g; SE = 5.5), which resulted from effects (P < 0.05) in PR 3 after weaning (-87, -69, -16, and -2 g for CO, SB, 1X, and 2X, respectively; SE = 14.3). In conclusion, use of the SB was not beneficial, and infrequent access to supplement pastures had relatively small effects on ADG, perhaps because forage availability and nutritive value were not severely limiting.