Daniellia oliveri as a fodder tree for small ruminant and the interaction of its tannin with ruminal ammonia
Keywords:Daniellia oliveri, nutrient digestibilities, ruminal ammonia, WAD sheep
Daniellia Oliveri was examined as a potential fodder for small ruminant, using nine castrated and ruminally fistulated West African Dwarf sheep (29 kg BW) to determine rumen ammonia and nutrient digestibility. Dried leaves of Daniellia oliveri were offered at two levels (25% and 50% of DMI) as supplement to a basal hay diet. A digestibility trial of 8 days was conducted after 10 days of adaptation period. Rumen liquor was sampled one hour before, and one, three and five hours after the morning feeding for three consecutive days. Diet D50% showed a higher (P<0.05) pH than both the control and D25% diets, respectively. Diet D25% had an inferior (P<0.05) pH than the controls. The ruminal ammonia concentration of D25% was superior (P<0.05) to D50% and the controls, respectively. Similarly, diet D50% had a superior (P<0.05) ruminal ammonia concentration than the controls. There were significant increases (P<0.05) in the OM, CP, NDF, ADF, ADL and cellulose intake of D50% diet compared with the controls. Similarly, inclusion level of 50% Daniellia oliveri resulted in a reduction (P<0.05) in digestibility of DMI, OM, NDF, ADF and ADL, in comparison to sheep fed the control diet. Cellulose and hemi-cellulose digestibility of diet D50% was superior (P<0.05) to that of the controls. It would appear that condensed tannins had inhibitory effect on organic matter and detergent fibre digestibility. It was concluded that Daniellia oliveri with a high CP and GE (165 g/kg and 20.3 kJ/g DM) respectively, could serve as a fodder tree for small ruminant in spite of its relatively high content of condensed tannin (48 g/kg DM). An inclusion range of 25 to 50% was recommended during period of scarcity.