Effects of feeding Mediterranean buffalo sorghum silage versus maize silage on the rumen microbiota and milk fatty acid content

Sharon Ann Huws, Antonella Chiariotti, Fiorella Sarubbi, Francesca Carfì, Vilma Pace

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Sorghum presents a sustainable feedstock for Mediterranean buffaloes due to its reduced water and nitrogen requirements compared with maize, which is currently fed primarily. We investigated the effects of feeding sorghum as opposed to maize on Mediterranean buffalo rumen microbial diversity and milk fatty acid content. Four cannulated lactating Mediterranean buffalo cows were fed a basal diet for one month before switching either to maize or sorghum-silage based diets for a 3-month period. Buffaloes were then changed over to the contrasting diet for a further one month. Rumen and milk samples were collected at the end of each month. DGGE-and T-RFLP-based dendrograms generated from rumen samples did not show an effect of diet on rumen bacterial diversity. Milk samples also did not differ in terms of their fatty acid content post sorghum feeding as compared with maize feeding. Thus, sorghum provides an environmentally beneficial alternative to maize for feeding Mediterranean buffalo with little effect on rumen microbial diversity or milk fatty acid composition compared with maize feeding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-112
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of General and Applied Microbiology
Volume58
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Bacteria
  • DGGE
  • Fatty acids
  • Mediterranean buffalo
  • Rumen
  • T-RFLP

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

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