R. Bras. Zootec.. 01/Jun/2016;45(6):309-18.
Performance, rumen development, and carcass traits of male calves fed starter concentrate with crude glycerin
The objective of this study was to assess the effects of including crude glycerin in the diet on intake, performance, rumen development, and carcass traits of dairy crossbred veal calves fed starter concentrate containing 0, 80, 160, and 240 g kg−1 crude glycerin. Twenty-eight calves with an average weight of 38.03±6.7 kg and five days of age were distributed in a completely randomized design with four treatments with seven replications. Calves were individually housed in covered stalls equipped with feeders and drinkers for 56 days. The calf response to inclusion of crude glycerin in the concentrate changed over the weeks and the inclusion level of 240 g kg−1 resulted in greater dry matter intake and average daily gain. There was no effect on the final weight and total weight gain of the animals, with mean values of 73.60 and 35.16 kg, respectively. The weight of the rumen-reticulum adjusted for body weight, empty body weight, and total stomach weight increased linearly with the inclusion of crude glycerin. Blood total protein, globulin, urea, cholesterol, gamma glutamyl transferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and alkaline phosphatase concentrations did not differ among treatments. Carcass traits and meat color were not affected. Crude glycerin can be added to dairy calf starter concentrate up to 240 g kg−1 dry matter because it benefits concentrate intake, performance, and rumen development without affecting animal health.