This study was aimed to obtain fundamental data to establish the grazing system for sustainable use and ecological preservation of rangeland in Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau through investigation of yak behaviour in rotational-grazing paddocks between winter-spring (cold) and summer-autumn (warm) seasons. Behavioural observations of 3 grazing yaks were conducted in warm season paddock (WSGP) and cold season paddock (CSGP) in Yushu Tibetan-Autonomous State, Qinghai Province, China. Grazing time of yak was 590.2 min/day in July 2009 (W09) and 511.8 min/day in August 2010 (W10) in WSGP, and 468.0 min/day in April 2008 (C08) in CSGP. It was significantly shorter in CSGP than in WSGP (P<0.001). The rumination time was significantly longer in WSGP (W09: 373.5 min/day and W10: 419.8 min/day) than in CSGP (C08:195.3 min/day) (P<0.001). The chewing number per bolus in rumination was significantly different among the observation periods (p<0.001) and chewing rate was greatest in C08 among the three (P<0.001). The bite number per patch in foraging behaviour was not significantly different among the observation periods (p>0.05). Bite rate in a patch and number of steps between patches were significantly greater in WSGP (W09 and W10) than that in CSGP (C8) (p<0.001). Number of feeding station (FS) per patch was greater in C08 than in W09 and foraging time per FS was greater in C08 than in W09, but bite number per FS was smaller in C08 than in W10 (p<0.05). It was considered that the differences of vegetation and biomass influenced on grazing and rumination in yak behaviour and that new grazing system should be investigated.
In our previous extension activity of dwarf variety of late-heading type (DL) napiergrass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach) to southern Kyushu, weed control was found to be a crucial factor for obtaining good establishment and considerable herbage dry matter (DM) yield in an established year. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of several weed control practices, i. e. mixed sowing of annual setaria, which has no regrowth ability in stem-elongated tillers, paper-mulching and hand-weeding, compared with no weeding control on DM yield, quality and wintering ability of this species in 2008 and 2010. Growth attributes including herbage yield, in vitro DM digestibility (IVDMD) and crude protein (CP) content as herbage quality and percentage of overwintered plants (POP) as wintering ability of this species were determined in both years. Weed control practices had a significantly (P < 0.05) positive effect on plant height, tiller density, percentage of leaf blade and leaf area index in DL napiergrass, compared with no-weeding control, and paper-mulching had the highest yields in both years and highest POP at 100% in 2008-2009. Setaria-sowing had a partially mitigating effect of weed damage on growth of DL napiergrass, while additive DM gain from setaria could compensate the yield decrease in DL napiergrass. Neither IVDMD nor CP was affected by any weed control practice in either year. Thus, paper-mulching and annual setaria-sowing could be a good proposal in weed control management of DL napiergrass.
This study was carried out to obtain basic information on the effective techniques for preventing sika deer (Cervus nippon) invasion on the meadow. The first experiment was conducted to prove behavioural response of 3 domesticated deer to 4 different height (50, 100,150, or 200 cm) of synthetic fiber net fence (mesh size of a net: 6x6 cm). The animals passed through net fences at the height of 50 and 100 cm. On the other hand, all the animals exhibited exploratory behaviour toward the net fences at the height of 150 and 200 cm, and touched the 0-100 cm high nets with their lips or heads. However, there was no sika deer which leaped over net fences during the observation period (8 hr). In the second experiment, the effects of net fences at the height of 150 cm on wild animals' invasion on the meadow were investigated from November in 2008 to January in 2009 (about 3 months). From the results of the census in the early morning (6:00-7:00 h) in January, the net fences seemed to be more effective in preventing sika deer invasion as compared to the 4- wire and 140 cm-height electric fence (voltage and pulse interval, approximately 4,000 V and 1 s, respectively). At the end of the observation period (3 months later), the herbage mass of the net fences' area (1 ha) was significantly larger than that of the electric fences' one (1 ha) (P<0.05). These findings indicate that net fences at the height of 150 cm (fixed the lower part to ground) are effective in preventing the sika deer invasion on the meadow in livestock farm.
This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of feeding level of eco-feed from a box lunch factory on the performance, carcass characteristics and meat quality of finishing pigs. The dried eco-feed contained 91% bread crumb and dough. The control group was fed on a grain diet, while the experimental groups were fed eco-feed such that it constituted 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% of their total diet, on raw matter basis. The diets were fed to 40 pigs (average body weight 69.2±0.4 kg) until the finishing weight at meat market. The animals were then slaughtered, and their longissimus muscle and backfat were used to assess the meat quality. Fattening periods and feed conversion rates were significantly higher in the 50%, 75% and 100% eco-feed groups than in the control and 25% eco-feed groups. However, total feed cost reduced substantially in the 50% and 75% eco-feed groups as compared to the control group. Feeding of eco-feed did not affect the carcass characteristics or the meat quality except marbling and fatty acid composition in any of the groups significantly. The degree of marbling and the content of ether extract of the longissimus muscle were significantly increased or tend to be increased by feeding diet with eco-feed levels of more than 50% or even. These results indicated that eco-feed mainly composed of bread is useful feed to be able to lower the productive cost and to control the marbling in pigs by the feeding level.
Elucidation of characteristic of palisadegrass (Brachiaria brizantha (A. Rich. ) Stapf) was conducted in this study. Dry matter production and utilization in grazed pasture where palisadegrass was sown in spring in an Italian ryegrass standing crops using a no-till planter. We prepared a non-plowed reseeding treatment and a plowed treatment (control) with spacing of 25 m x 25 m with three replications. The germination rate, above ground biomass and vegetation were compared. Germination rates of the non-plowed reseeding treatment tend to be lower than those of the plowed treatment. These findings suggested that the seeding process in the non-plowed reseeding treatment was inhibited by the Italian ryegrass standing crop. The non-plowed reseeding treatment was inferior to the plowed treatment during initial growth. The sluggish growth of the non-plowed reseeding treatment was expected to result from competition with Italian ryegrass and weeds. The non-plowed reseeding treatment had less aboveground biomass of palisadegrass than the plowed treatment at 56 days after seeding (grazing start day). From 41 days after grazing, the non-plowed reseeding treatment came to have more aboveground biomass of palisadegrass than the plowed treatment. The non-plowed reseeding treatment came to have less trodden-down parts of the plant than the plowed treatment had. Additionally, result show that dry matter production decreased with the decline of the air temperature from mid-September.
The effect of high ambient temperature on myofibrillar proteolysis in high-yielding lactating cows was investigated. In a 2 x 2 crossover design, four multiparous lactating Holstein cows were maintained in a chamber under conditions of constant moderate ambient temperature (MT) or high ambient temperature (HT). Dry matter intake (P < 0.10) and milk yield (P < 0.10), and milk protein yield (P < 0.05) were lower in HT than MT. Urinary 3-methylhistidine excretion were 1.87 mmol/day in MT and 1.92 mmol/day in HT, but no statistically significant difference was found. Plasma 3-methylhistidine concentrations were higher (P < 0.05) in HT (6.9 nmol/ml) than MT (4.1 nmol/ml), indicating that high ambient temperature increased the myofibrillar proteolysis. The expression of muscle calpain SS (small subunit (28kDa)), -1, and -3, and calpastatin mRNA in HT were increased 1.4, 1.1, 1.6, and 1.4-fold of MT, respectively, but no statistically significant difference was found. Meanwhile, the correlation between the level of plasma 3-methylhistidine and the level of muscle calpain 3 mRNA was significant (P < 0.05) and its correlation coefficient was the highest in calpain family. In conclusion, high ambient temperature affected the plasma index of myofibrillar proteolysis related to the expression of muscle calpain 3 and calpastatin mRNA in high-yielding lactating dairy cows.