• Wanapat, M. (Ruminant Nutrition Laboratory, Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Khon Kaen University) ;
  • Wachirapakorn, C. (Ruminant Nutrition Laboratory, Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Khon Kaen University)
  • Received : 1989.12.21
  • Accepted : 1990.05.18
  • Published : 1990.09.01


Thirty-six yearling (18 bulls, 18 heifers) swamp buffaloes (Bubalus bubalis) with average liveweight $177{\pm}26kg$, were randomly allotted to receive 6 dietary treatments according to a $2{\times}3$ factorial arrangement in a completely randomized design (CRD). Factor A assigned for two types of straw; untreated rice straw (RS) and urea-treated (5%, w/w) rice straw (UTS). Factor B assigned for three ratio of roughage to concentrate (R:C) at 80:20, 50:50 and 20:80. Feeding trial lasted for 9 months during which respective feeds were offered at 3% body weight and adjusted at bi-weekly intervals using corresponding liveweights. Parameters measured under this experiment were feed intake, ruminal fluid for pH, $NH_3-N$, volatile fatty acids (VFA), liveweight change at bi-weekly intervals, carcass characteristics and cost-net profit analysis. It was found that intakes and digestion coefficients of DM, OM, CP except NDF and ADF were improved appreciably when ratio of concentrate increased. The average daily gain (ADG) and feed conversion ratio (FCR) were highest in group fed urea-treated rice straw at R:C levels of 20:80 (551.2 g/d, 10.7 kg/kg) and 50:50 (542.3 g/d, 10.6 kg/kg). It was obvious that FCR was best in the group fed on urea-treated rice straw (13.8 kg/kg) as compared to untreated rice straw fed-group (24 kg/kg). Carcass compositions of buffaloes measured resulted in 48.2 dressing percentage in all treatments offered at R:C levels of 50:50 and 20:80, however, loin eye area were 46.0, 53.6, 50.0 and $54.0cm^2$ for RS and UTS at respective levels of R:C. It was notable that carcass fat content was low which resulted in higher content of lean meat particularly in group fed UTS at 50:50 ratio R:C. Simple cost-net profit analysis was performed, it was found that net profits were obtained as follows 27, 30, -47, 44, 58, 22 $US/hd for respective treatment groups of RS and UTS at respective R:C levels. As shown, the best net profit resulted in group fed UTS at 50:50 R:C level.