Effect of grazing experience in a wasted mulberry plantation on foraging manner of mulberry leaves by cows was investigated in three grazing areas (0.32-0.46ha) established in a wasted mulberry plantation. During late June to early July 2007, a pair of Japanese Black cows grazed in each area, and foraging behavior of the six cows was recorded by focal sampling on the first day of the grazing period. Three cows out of the six had the grazing experience (EX) in the same mulberry plantation in the previous year, but other three were not experienced (NE). EX cows pulled twigs with leaves above its head down more frequently than NE cows (P < 0.01) before ingesting mulberry leaves. EX cows also foraged mulberry leaves more frequently by prehending current year twigs with leaves and less frequently by plucking individual leaves directly than NE cows (P < 0.001). Foraging failures were observed only in NE cows when prehending current year twigs (P < 0.01). Bringing out of a mulberry tree was also observed one time in an EX cow. These results suggest that grazing cows improve foraging efficiency of mulberry leaves by developing their foraging manner through grazing experience and learning in the mulberry plantation.
The objective of this study was to examine the chemical composition of whole-plants of Japanese soybean varieties for edible use (i.e., Tachinagaha, Kinusayaka, Ryuho, Suzukari, and Fukuibuki) as sources of high-protein feed in two growth stages (i.e., full seed (R6) and beginning maturity (R7)), and to evaluate the fermentation quality of their silage. The crude protein content was not affected by variety and growth stage, always remaining at 20% or greater. The contents of other chemical composition were affected by variety and/or growth stage, and especially the ether extract content was changed by variety. The fermentation quality of the whole-crop silage can be improved by wilting (R6) and adding lactic acid bacteria (R7) regardless of the variety. Based on these results, the potential capacity for Japanese soybean varieties as whole-crop silage has been clarified.