Dietary effect of Aloe vera crude saponin extract included urea-ammoniated maize stover silage fed West African Dwarf (WAD) ram
Maize stover constitutes major waste in most farms in Nigeria. Maize stover can be converted to feed for ruminants when fortified with urea. Ammonium nitrogen is lost post feeding without a binder. This study investigated the possibility of using saponin from Aloe vera, an ornamental, as a binder to override this constraint. Three experimental silages were prepared each from 3.6 g kg-1 urea ammoniated maize stover with 135 mg Aloe vera crude saponin extract CSE, synthetic saponin and control. Three rams were randomly allotted to each dietary treatment. Every week a new ram was allotted a treatment for 12 h one day a week for three weeks, each week represented a replicate. Data were collected at 0, 4, 8 and 12 h of feeding. Chemical composition of silages, rumen pH, ammonium nitrogen and volatile fatty acids (VFAs) were determined. The data were analysed as a 3×4 factorial in CRD. Lignin content of silages was reduced when saponin was included in silages. The pH (6.73-7.2) was significantly different (P<0.05) among dietary treatments. Propionate production (3.47-5.89 mmol 100 mL-1) increased with time while Aloe vera CSE ensured continuous supply of ammonium nitrogen up to 12 h post feeding. Thus, dietary saponin from Aloe vera can be used to trap down nitrogen in ammoniated feed stuff without significant reduction in ruminal pH, VFAs, and microbes. Hence, it improves ruminant performance.
Kenneth-Obosi, O., Babayemi, O.J., Akinbami, A.A. and Ogunjobi, A.A. (2018). Dietary effect of Aloe vera crude saponin extract included urea-ammoniated maize stover silage fed West African Dwarf (WAD) ram. Acta Hortic. 1225, 289-294
urea-ammoniation, rumen microbe, ruminant nutrition, Aloe vera, synthetic saponin