POSSIBILITY OF USING DISCARDED PRICKLY PEARS CACTUS FRUITS AS A FEED FOR RUMINANTS
This study had the objective to explore the possibility of producing new ruminant feed containing discarded fruits and pads from prickly pears cactus. First of all, the chemical composition and nutritive value of these cactus products were determined and showed that cactus fruits and pads are high in energy and low in protein. Then, trials were made to produce feed as silage, and dry mix from these products of cactus and other ingredients, i.e., chopped straw, dry beet pulp, wheat bran, urea, and minerals and vitamins. Different feed formulations were tested to produce silage and dry mix containing cactus products. The one used in the animal growth trial includes (as fed basis) cactus fruit (45%), dry beet pulp (17%), wheat bran (20%), chopped straw (9%), cactus pads meal (6%), urea (1%) and salt (1%). Also, to evaluate the effect of incorporating these feeds produced from cactus (silage and dry, with or without supplementation with barley grains) on animal performance of growing-fattening sheep a trial including 40 lambs was conducted in Guelmim, South of Morocco. Silage made from cactus products studied here presented an energy value of about 0.98 UFL/kg DM and a protein value of 100 g PDIN/kg DM and 81 g PDIE/kg DM. This silage was well conserved (pH<4). The dry mix feed had 0.80 UFL, 90 g PDIN and 88 g PDIE per kg DM. The growth trial highlighted the superiority of dry feed supplemented with barley. Indeed, the final body weight was 26.7, 23.8, 27.7, 22.7 and 24.7 kg, average daily gain was 131, 103, 148, 90 and 112 g/d, and intake was 1.26, 0.85, 0.95, 0.72 and 0.82 kg DM/animal/day for the T, SSS, SAS, ESS, and EAS groups, respectively.
Araba, A., Youssoufi, H., Boutouba, A., Anegay, K., Salhi, O. and Mouncif, M. (2013). POSSIBILITY OF USING DISCARDED PRICKLY PEARS CACTUS FRUITS AS A FEED FOR RUMINANTS. Acta Hortic. 995, 309-312
prickly pears cactus, fruits, pads, silage, dry mix, sheep