Performance of Galla Goats Fed Different Cultivars of Brachiaria in the Coastal Lowlands of KenyaNgila P1*, Njarui DM1, Musimba NK2 and Njunie M3
- *Corresponding Author:
- Ngila P
Kenya Agricultural and Research Organization (KALRO) Katumani
P.O Box 340, Machakos, Kenya
Tel: +254 721 730 227
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: October 06, 2016; Accepted Date: December 28, 2016; Published Date: December 30, 2016
Citation: Ngila P, Njarui DM, Musimba NK, Njunie M (2016) Performance of Galla Goats Fed Different Cultivars of Brachiaria in the Coastal Lowlands of Kenya. J Fisheries Livest Prod 5: 210 doi: 10.4172/2332-2608.1000210
Copyright: © 2016 Ngila P, et al.. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Background: Inadequate quality and quantity of feed is the major constraint to livestock production in the arid and semi-arid regions of Kenya. The productivity of livestock in Kenya is strongly linked to feed resource availability. This study was therefore done to determine the chemical composition and dry matter digestibility of three Brachiaria cultivars namely; Brachiaria brizantha cvs. Piata and MG4, Brachiaria hybrid cv. Mulato II and their effects of live weight changes of Galla goats in the coastal lowlands of Kenya. They were compared with the commonly grown grass, Rhodes grass Methods: Sixteen Galla goats ranging from 10-24 kg were randomly allocated to the four dietary treatments with four animals per treatment. Each goat was supplemented with 100 g/day of maize germ. Mineral licks and water were provided ad libitum. Results: The cv. Piata had the highest (P<0.05) crude protein (CP) (12.60% of dry matter) while cv. Mulato II had the lowest (3.01% of dry matter) for the Brachiaria forages. When compared to the control (Rhodes grass), the control grass had a significantly higher CP content (6.74% of dry matter) than Mulato II but lower compared to cvs. MG4 and Piata at (P<0.05). The cvs. Piata and MG4 were also more digestible that Mulato II and Rhodes grass. There was no significance difference (P>0.05) on intake of grass among the goats and ranged from 513-661 g/goat/day. Average daily weight gain were higher (P<0.05) in goats fed Piata (45.21 g/day) and MG4 (41.28 g/day) than those fed Mulato II (1.99 g/day) and Rhodes grass (9.64 g/day). Likewise goats fed on Piata (3.80 kg) and MG4 (3.47 kg) had the highest (P<0.05) total weight gain compared with goats fed on Mulato II (0.17 kg) and Rhodes grass (0.81 kg). Conclusion: Based on body weight changes and nutritive values, Piata and MG4 showed the greatest potential to address feed quality constraints to livestock production especially in the arid and semi-arid regions of Kenya.