An experiment was conducted to investigate the influence of repetition of preference trial on preference evaluation for roughage. Four sheep were used to conduct paired comparison trials of (1) two grass species: timothy (Phleum pretense L.) hay (TH) and oats (Avena sativa L.) hay (OH), (2) two different rice (Oriza sativa L.) genotypes whole-crop silage (RWCS): Bekogonomi and NERICA, and (3) the aforementioned 2 genotypes of RWCS mixed with apple-pomace (AP) at 50% on fresh-matter basis (50%AP-RWCS). Each sheep was simultaneously offered 2 test feeds and the intake was recorded for an hour. A 5-day comparison session on alternate days for each pair was conducted in order of hays, RWCSs, hays, 50%AP-RWCSs and hays. Dry-matter intake (DMI) of OH was significantly lower than TH for the first 5-day comparisons and most of the second 5-day session. However, DMI of hays was not different at the third 5-day comparisons. Similarly, DMI of Bekogonomi-RWCS was significantly lower than that of NERICA-RWCS at the initial 2 days, but it increased gradually and DMI of RWCS was not different in the later of trial. DMI of 50%AP-RWCS was not different throughout 5 days. These results suggest that receptiveness of unpalatable feeds can be improved by recurrent exposure.
Pulsatilla cernua (Thunb.) Spreng. is an endangered plant species, which lives mainly in semi-natural grasslands of Japan. We investigated P. cernua emergence and seedling survival at planters in the years 2014 and 2018. The soil conditions were humus soil, soil with litter, sand and gravel, set up under two varying light conditions: bright light condition and dark light condition with cheesecloth. As a result, seedlings emerged more often in humus soil under bright light conditions and in sand under dark conditions. The survival rate was higher in dark conditions, particularly in litter. Many seedlings grew in small grain sized sand with large contact surface area and in humus soil which easily holds water. The survival rate was particularly higher in litter where it is easy to retain water and in dark conditions. On the other hand, the rate of seedling survival decreased due to long non-precipitation periods, which suggests that seedlings germinate in June and survive from July to August due to the stable precipitation.
To reduce dry cost and transportation storage expenses of storing feed rice, we investigated the results of storage outdoors for long periods. After husking unprocessed fresh paddy rice, batches of brown rice were dried for different times resulting in different amounts of residual water, and placed into polyethylene plastic bags 0.08 mm thick. Brown rice with a water content of 16% immediately began to show growth of mold after being placed in storage. Brown rice with a water content of 14.8% could be stored without mold formation for 6 months. However, the amount of mold began to increase from the 9th month. Brown rice with water contents of 12.6% and 13.5% could be stored for 12 months with less mold that conventional livestock feed. These observations indicated that limiting the water content in brown rice to below 13.5% at the start of storage would prevent the formation of mold, which reduces the value of stored feed rice. Therefore, this would enable outdoor storage of brown rice for 1 year.