DRY MATTER YIELD, BOTANICAL AND CHEMICAL COMPOSITION OF NATURAL FORAGES OF THE SOUTH WESTERN NIGERIA AS INFLUENCED BY TOPOGRAPHY, LAND USE AND SEASON

Authors

  • Ojo, V.O.A. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Jolaosho, A.O. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Onifade, O.S. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Amodu, J.T. National Animal Production Research Institute, Ahmadu Bello University, Shika-Zaria,
  • Olanite, J.A. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Arigbede, O.M. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Anele, U.Y. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Lethbridge Research Centre, Lethbridge, T1J 4B1, Alberta Canada
  • Adeoye, S.A. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Dele, P.A. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  • Amole, T.A. Department of Pasture and Range Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria

Keywords:

Forages, yield, topography, land, season, dry matter

Abstract

Field experiment was conducted to evaluate the dry matter (DM) yield, botanical and
chemical composition of a natural grazing land. The experiment was carried out in a 4 ×
2 × 2 factorial design with four seasons (early rainy, late rainy, early dry and late dry),
two types of topography (upland and lowland) and two land usage (cultivated and
fallowed). Panicum maximum and Tephrosia bracteolata forages were the most
distributed grasses and legumes in all the seasons, topography and land use systems.
Upland topography and fallowed land produced the highest significant (P < 0.05) dry
matter yield (5.45 t ha–1) of grass/legume mixtures in the late rainy season. During the
early rainy season, highest (P < 0.05) values of 8.9, 3.2 and 11.2% were recorded for
crude protein, ether extract and ash respectively. However, the lowest (P < 0.05) fibre
values (54.7%, 29.9% and 10.9% for NDF, ADF and ADL respectively) were recorded
in the early rainy season. Results from the study showed that forages from the natural
grazing land can easily be harvested by livestock farmers during the late rainy season,
as it requires little or no input in terms of managements such as weeding and fertilizer
application which tends to increase the production cost of the forages. The harvested
forages during this time, will provide sufficient high quality biomass that will be used as
a supplement during the dry season for the grazing ruminant animals.

Published

2016-12-30