Utilization of Steam-treated Oil Palm Fronds in Growing Saanen Goats: II. Supplementation with Energy and Urea

  • Paengkoum, Pramote ;
  • Liang, J.B. ;
  • Jelan, Z.A. ;
  • Basery, M.
  • Received : 2006.04.11
  • Accepted : 2006.05.24
  • Published : 2006.11.01


The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of protein and energy on goats fed oil palm fronds (OPF) as roughages. Twenty-four male Saanen goats aged between 7 and 8 months and weighing $23.4{\pm}1.6kg$ were used in a $2{\times}3$ factorial design. Factors were three levels of urea (3%, 4% or 5%) and two levels of energy (low energy (LE) or high energy (HE)). On average, all parameters measured, including dry matter intake (DMI), nutrient digestibility, digestible nutrient intakes, ruminal ammonia-N ($NH_3$-N), ruminal total volatile fatty acid (total VFA) and individual VFA concentrations (mM/L), microbial N supply, P/E ratio and N retention were higher for HE compared to LE diets. Significant (p<0.05) interactions were found between levels of urea and energy for nonstructural carbohydrate (NSC) and energy (DE) digestibilities, ruminal $NH_3$-N and total VFA concentrations. HE diets had higher N absorption and retention than LE diets. Interactions between urea and energy for plasma urea nitrogen (PUN), heat production (HP), and urine and faeces N excretion were significantly lower (p<0.05) for the HE diets than those recorded for the LE diets. The results indicated that supplementation of energy enhanced utilization of urea and resulted in higher animal performance as a consequence of improved ruminal fermentation, microbial yield and N balance. However, the optimal level of urea supplementation remained at 3% in the HE diet.


Urea;Fermentable Energy;Microbial N Supply;Oil Palm Fronds;Saanen Goats


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