Publications

NIBIOs employees contribute to several hundred scientific articles and research reports every year. You can browse or search in our collection which contains references and links to these publications as well as other research and dissemination activities. The collection is continously updated with new and historical material.

2019

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Abstract

In this study, a brown macroalgae species, Saccharina latissima, processed to increase its protein concentration, and a red macroalgae species, Porphyra spp., were used to evaluate their in vivo digestibility, rumen fermentation and blood amino acid concentrations. Four castrated rams were used, whose diets were supplemented with a protein-rich fraction of S. latissima, a commercial Porphyra spp. and soybean meal (SBM). Our results show that the protein digestibility of a diet with S. latissima extract was lower (0.55) than those with Porphyra spp. (0.64) and SBM (0.66). In spite of the higher nitrogen (N) intake of diets containing Porphyra spp. and SBM (20.9 and 19.8 g N/day, respectively) than that with S. latissima (18.6 g N/day), the ratio of N excreted in faeces to total N intake was significantly higher in the diet with S. latissima than those with Porphyra spp. and SBM. This reflects that the utilization of protein in S. latissima was impaired, possibly due to reduced microbial activity. The latter statement is corroborated by lower volatile fatty acid composition (25.6, 54.8 and 100 mmol/l for S. latissima, Porphyra spp. and SBM, respectively) and a non-significant tendency for lower ammonia concentration observed in diets with S. latissima and Porphyra spp. compared to SBM. It is important to note that the S. latissima used in this trial was rinsed during processing to remove salt. This process potentially also removes other water-soluble compounds, such as free amino acids, and may have increased the relative fraction of protein resistant to rumen degradation and intestinal absorption. Furthermore, the phlorotannins present in macroalgae may have formed complexes with protein and fibre, further limiting their degradability in rumen and absorption in small intestines. We recommend that further studies explore the extent to which processing of macroalgae affects its nutritive properties and rumen degradability, in addition to studies to measure the intestinal absorption of these macroalgae species

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Abstract

Horses use human-made shelters actively during inclement weather, but the costs of building shelters may be high and owners use blankets or rugs on horses instead. The aim of the study was to investigate how wearing a blanket might affect the shelter seeking behaviour of horses under coastal arctic winter conditions. Could blankets make shelters redundant? During different winter weather conditions, seventeen horses had a full-neck blanket of their size put on and were released in a test paddock. There, horses were given free choice between staying outdoors, going into a heated shelter compartment or into a non-heated shelter compartment. An observer scored horse’s location and behaviour using instantaneous sampling every minute for 1 h. Each horse was tested 2–12 days but only once per day. Detailed weather data (precipitation, wind and temperature) were continuously recorded by a weather station at the site. In general, horses with blankets still used the shelter and were observed inside in (mean per horse) 20.6% of total observations. Horses spent more time inside shelters on days with rain and wind (39.7% of tot obs) compared to on days with wind only (11.8% of tot obs, P = 0.05). Small coldblood horses were more active, spending more time in movement than large coldblood and large warmblood horses (P = 0.01). In conclusion, wearing blankets reduced the impact of inclement weather, but did not make the shelter redundant for horses, under Nordic winter conditions.

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Abstract

Dairy products are often considered challenging for health due to their saturated fatty acid content, yet they also provide beneficial nutrients, some unique to ruminants. The degree of fat saturation is influenced by cows’ diets; grazing pasture enhances unsaturated fatty acids in milk compared with conserved forages. These benefits can be partially mimicked by feeding oilseeds and here we consider the impact on milk composition in a 2 × 2 trial, feeding rapeseed to both conventional and organic cows, finding very differing lipid metabolism in the 4 experimental groups. For milk fat, benefits of organic rather than conventional management (+39% PUFA, +24% long chain omega-3 and +12% conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)) appear complementary to those from feeding rape (+43% MUFA, +10% PUFA, +40% CLA), combining to produce milk 16% lower SFA and higher in MUFA (43%), PUFA (55%) and CLA (59%). Organic and rape feeding provide less omega-3 PUFA than the conventional and control diets, yet contrary to expectations, together they almost doubled (+94%) the omega-3 concentration in milk, implying a 3.8 fold increase in net transfer from diet into milk. Organic and rape feeding also gave lower trace-elements and antioxidants in milk. Greater understanding of these phenomena might enhance the sustainability of dairying.

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Abstract

Two short-term grazing experiments were conducted with Norwegian Red cows. In Exp 1, 24 cows were randomly assigned to one of the following three pasture allocation methods (PAM): weekly pasture allowance (7RG), grazing 1/7 of 7RG each day (1SG), or grazing as 1SG but had access to grazed part of the paddock within one week (1FG). In Exp 2, 7RG was shortened to 5 days (5RG). We hypothesized that PAM will affect sward quality, quantity, intake and production differently. Pasture chemical composition changed with advancing grazing days but were not different between treatments. Pasture intake, milk yield, and methane emission were not affected by PAM. In Exp 1, 7RG cows spent less time on grazing, whereas in Exp 2, 1FG cows spent longer on grazing than others. Patterns observed in sward quality, and behavioural and physiological adaptations of cows to short-term changes in nutrient supply may explain the observed effects.

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Abstract

Utilisable crude protein (uCP), methane (CH4) production and other fermentation parameters were analysed in vitro for a diet in which grass silage was replaced by different levels of seaweed protein fractions prepared from three seaweed species: Saccharina latissima, Alaria esculenta and Palmaria palmata. Ten fractions from these three species in which the protein content had been increased and the salt content reduced by simple processing were tested, with inclusion levels in the diet based on the nitrogen content of the fractions. Following an extraction procedure, four fractions from Saccharina latissima, three from Alaria esculenta and one from Palmaria palmata, were gradually included in the diet by replacing high quality silage with approximately 0, 0.15, 0.30 and 0.45 g/g DM, while two high-protein fractions of Palmaria palmata were tested at replacement levels of 0, 0.075, 0.15 and 0.225 g/g DM. To estimate fermentation parameters, 500 mg of each diet were incubated in bottles with 60 mL buffered rumen fluid. Estimated uCP increased linearly with increasing replacement rate of grass silage with seaweed protein fractions (from 158 g/kg DM to 206 g/kg DM on average for all fractions). Increasing protein fraction from the brown seaweed Saccharina latissima in the diet significantly increased true organic matter digestibility (OMD) (from on average 0.786 to 0.821). Organic matter digestibility decreased with increasing level of Alaria esculenta fractions (from on average 0.785 to 0.733), which also gave a linear decrease in CH4 production (from on average 45.3 to 38.5 mL/g organic matter). As a result of decreased CH4 production and OMD, total volatile fatty acid concentration decreased with increasing level of Alaria esculenta fractions (from on average 69.5 to 63.0 mmol/L). Thus, positive and species-specific effects of seaweed on estimated uCP and fermentation parameters were observed in vitro when protein fractions remaining after an extraction procedure on seaweed partly replaced grass silage in the feed ration.