Benefits of Leucaena diversifolia in grazing steers diet: Performance, methane and fatty acids
Isabel C. Molina-Botero1, Daniel Mauricio Villegas1, Alejandro Montoya1, Johanna Mazabel1, Mike Bastidas1, Herman Gaviria2, Juan David Peláez2, Julián Chará3, Enrique Murgueitio3, Jacobo Arango1
1International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Trop. Forages Program, Colombia
Leucaena diversifolia (Ld) is a legume species that has received little attention in terms of its nutritive value, methane (CH4) emissions, and impact on meat quality. To address this gap, a study was conducted to compare the performance, CH4 emissions, and fatty acid content of steers grazing on a monoculture of tropical grass Urochloa hybrid cv. Cayman versus a combination of Cayman and Ld. Over a period of 15 months, 14 Angus crossbred steers weighing an average of 374±7.5 kg were used in the study, with half of them grazing only Cayman grass and the other half grazing on a combination of Cayman and Ld at a ratio of 74:26. Live weight gain was recorded and CH4 emissions were measured after the animal productivity test. Meat quality and fatty acid profiles were measured after the steers were slaughtered.
Keywords: Animal productivity, grasses, silvopastoral systems, unsaturated fatty acids
Contact Address: Jacobo Arango, International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), A A 6713, Cali, Colombia, e-mail: j.arangocgiar.org