The objectives of this research were to determine the interaction of monensin and haylage supplementation for steers fed 60% dried distillers grains (DDGS) on 1) mineral status, performance, and carcass characteristics, and on 2) ruminal pH, H2S, and shortchain fatty acid concentrations. In Exp. 1, Angus-cross steers (n = 168; BW = 277 ± 67 kg) were blocked by BW and allotted in a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement of treatments to 24 pens. Dietary treatments were 1) 0 mg of monensin/kg of diet + 0% haylage, 2) 33 mg of monensin/kg of diet + 0% haylage, 3) 0 mg of monensin/ kg of diet + 10% haylage, and 4) 33 mg of monensin/ kg of diet + 10% haylage. The remainder of the diet was 60% DDGS, 10% corn silage, 15% supplement, and corn (either 5 or 15%) on a DM basis. When supplemented with 0 mg of monensin/kg of diet, added haylage increased ADG by 5.7%, whereas when supplemented with 33 mg of monensin/kg of diet, added haylage increased ADG by 13% (P < 0.01). No interactions of monensin and haylage were observed for DMI or G:F (P = 0.36). Haylage inclusion increased (P < 0.01) DMI and decreased (P < 0.01) G:F. No interactions (P > 0.05) on plasma mineral concentrations were observed; however, over time, plasma Cu concentrations decreased (P < 0.01), whereas plasma ceruloplasmin and S concentrations increased (P < 0.01). There were no treatment effects (P = 0.08) on carcass characteristics. Cattle fed the 60% DDGS diets benefitted from increased dietary forage, and the effects of monensin and forage were additive for ADG and final BW. In Exp. 2, ruminally fistulated steers (n = 8; BW = 346 ± 34 kg) were used in a replicated 4 × 4 Latin square design and were randomly assigned to the diets used in Exp. 1. Haylage inclusion increased ruminal pH from 1.5 through 12 h postfeeding, and the effects of monensin supplementation were additive (P < 0.05). From 1.5 through 9 h postfeeding, steers fed 33 mg of monensin/kg of diet tended to have reduced (P = 0.10) concentrations of H2S when compared with steers fed 0 mg of monensin/kg of diet. Acetate:propionate ratios at 6 h postfeeding were 0.94, 0.93, 1.29, and 1.35 for diets 1 to 4, respectively (P < 0.01); total lactate was decreased regardless of treatment (range: 0.94 to 1.42 μmol/mL). Sulfuric acid in DDGS, not ruminal shortchain fatty acids, may be responsible for the low rumen pH observed and may influence the maximum inclusion of DDGS in cattle diets. Monensin supplementation decreased H2S concentration and may decrease the risk of polioencephalomalacia for cattle fed high-DDGS diets.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Food Science
- Animal Science and Zoology