Relationship between feed efficiency indexes and performance, body measurements, digestibility, energy partitioning, and nitrogen partitioning in pre-weaning dairy heifers

Autoři: Camila Flávia de Assis Lage aff001;  Sandra Gesteira Coelho aff001;  Hilton do Carmo Diniz Neto aff001;  Victor Marco Rocha Malacco aff001;  João Paulo Pacheco Rodrigues aff002;  João Paulo Sacramento aff003;  Fernanda Samarini Machado aff004;  Luiz Gustavo Ribeiro Pereira aff004;  Thierry Ribeiro Tomich aff004;  Mariana Magalhães Campos aff004
Působiště autorů: Department of Animal Science, School of Veterinary, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Av. Antônio Carlos, Belo Horizonte—MG, Brazil aff001;  Institute of Studies of the Humid Tropic, Federal University of South and Southeast of Pará, Xinguara, Pará, Brazil aff002;  Department of Bioengineering, Federal University of São João Del Rey, Praça Frei Orlando, Centro, São João Del-Rei, Minas Gerais, Brazil aff003;  Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária, EMBRAPA), Embrapa Dairy Cattle, Av. Eugênio do Nascimento, Juiz de Fora—MG, Brazil aff004
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 14(10)
Kategorie: Research Article
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0223368


The objectives of this study were: 1) to classify animals into groups of high and low feed efficiency using two feed efficiency indexes (Residual feed intake (RFI) and residual feed intake and body weight gain (RIG)), and 2) to evaluate if pre-weaning heifer calves divergent for feed efficiency indexes exhibit differences in performance, body measurements, digestibility, energy partitioning, and nitrogen partitioning. A total of 32 Gyr heifer calves were enrolled in a 63-d trial and classified into two feed efficiency (FE) groups based on RFI and RIG (mean ± 0.5 SD). The groups were classified as high efficiency (HE) RFI (HE RFI, n = 9; HE RIG, n = 10), and low efficiency (LE) RFI (LE RFI, n = 10; LE RIG, n = 11). The remaining animals were classified as intermediate (n = 13 (RFI) and n = 11 (RIG)). HE and LE calves had RFI values of—0.052 and 0.049 kg/d (P < 0.05), respectively. The HE RFI group consumed 8.9% less solid diet than the LE RFI group. HE RFI animals exhibited an increased digestibility of crude protein and ether extract and tended to have greater total dry and organic matter digestibility. LE RFI animals had greater gross energy and nitrogen intake, though greater fecal losses resulted in a tendency to reduce energy and nitrogen use efficiency. HE and LE calves had RIG values of 0.080 and -0.077kg/d (P ≤ 0.01), respectively. HE RIG animals exhibited greater average daily gain (9.4%), body weight (BW), and heart girth, though HE RIG group exhibited narrower hip width. HE RIG animals tended to have greater ether extract digestibility but greater methane losses (% of gross energy). HE RFI in pre-weaning heifers seems to be related to differences in digestibility. Divergent animals for RIG during the assessed phase appear to differ in body measurements, which may be related to differences in the composition of the gain.

Klíčová slova:

Bioenergetics – Body weight – Diet – Hip – Milk – Nutrients – Methane


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2019 Číslo 10