Effects of Tween 80 on In Vitro Fermentation of Silages and Interactive Effects of Tween 80, Monensin and Exogenous Fibrolytic Enzymes on Growth Performance by Feedlot Cattle

  • Wang, Y. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Centre) ;
  • McAllister, T.A. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Centre) ;
  • Baah, J. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Centre) ;
  • Wilde, R. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Centre) ;
  • Beauchemin, K.A. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Centre) ;
  • Rode, L.M. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Centre) ;
  • Shelford, J.A. (Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, University of British Columbia) ;
  • Kamande, G.M. (Diamond V Mills) ;
  • Cheng, K.J. (Institute of BioAgricultural Sciences, Academia Sinica)
  • Received : 2002.07.02
  • Accepted : 2003.02.27
  • Published : 2003.07.01


The effects of monensin, Tween 80 and exogenous fibrolytic enzymes on ruminal fermentation and animal performance were studied in vitro and in vivo. In Expt 1, the effects of the surfactant Tween 80 (0.2% wt/wt, DM basis) on ruminal fermentation of alfalfa, corn and orchardgrass silages were investigated using in vitro gas production techniques. Tween 80 did not affect (p>0.05) cumulative gas production at 24 h, but it reduced (p<0.05) the lag in fermentation of all three silages. With corn silage and orchardgrass silage, gas production rates and concentrations of total volatile fatty acids (VFA) were increased (p<0.05) by Tween 80; with alfalfa silage, they were reduced (p<0.05). Tween 80 increased (p<0.05) the proportion of propionate in total VFA, and reduced (p<0.05) acetate to propionate ratios (A:P) with all three silages. In Expt 2, exogenous fibrolytic enzymes (E; at 0, 37.5 or 75 g/tonne DM), monensin (M; at 0 or 25 ppm and Tween 80 (T; at 0 or 2 L/tonne DM) were added alone or in combination to backgrounding and finishing diets fed to 320 crossbred steers in a feeding trial with a $3{\times}2{\times}$2 factorial arrangement of treatments. The backgrounding and finishing diets contained barley grain and barley silage in ratios of 57.8:42.2 and 93.5:6.5 (DM basis), respectively. Added alone, none of the additives affected DM intake (p>0.1) in the backgrounding or in the finishing period, but interactive $M{\times}T$ effects were observed in the finishing period (p=0.02) and overall (p=0.04). In the finishing period, T without M tended to reduce DM intake (p=0.11), but T with M increased (p=0.05) DM intake. Monensin increased average daily gain (ADG) during backgrounding (p=0.07) and finishing (p=0.01), and this ionophore also improved overall feed efficiency (p=0.02). Warm carcass weight was increased (p<0.001) by M, but dressing percentage was reduced (p=0.07). In the backgrounding period, T increased ADG by 7% (p=0.06). Enzymes increased (p=0.07) ADG by 5 and 6% (low and high application rates, respectively) during backgrounding, but did not affect (p>0.10) ADG during finishing, or overall feed efficiency. Whereas T enhanced the positive effects of M on ADG during backgrounding (p=0.04) and overall (p=0.05), it had no impact (p>0.1) on the effects of E. Interactions between M and T suggest that the surfactant may have potential for enhancing the positive effects of monensin on beef production, but this requires further research.


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