Published Online: September 29, 2018


Feeding and management strategies utilized to minimize feed sorting of beef and dairy cattle

Matheus Silva Rodrigues, Jhonatan Lafaete Freitas Lourenço, Lorena Martins Oliveira, Mateus da Silva Maia,

Rowberta Teixeira dos Santos, Tiago do Prado Paim, Eduardo Rodrigues de Carvalho

ABSTRACT Cattle have the natural capacity to sort for or against certain feed ingredients of the ration according to the particle size, a behavior known as feed sorting. Such feeding behavior may result in a reduced nutrient intake and may not meet the daily nutritional requirements of subordinate animals that will have access to the feed bunk at times subsequent to a new fresh feed has been offered, or, on the other hand, may drop ruminal pH and cause rumen acidosis by the excessive intake of highly fermentable carbohydrates in the rumen in dominant animals. There are several factors that influence feed sorting, such as dietary composition, forage quality and behavioral aspects inherent to the animal. The methodology to determine feed sorting is simple and allows to measure with accuracy the intake of each class of particle size consumed by the animal. In this context, the objective of this review is to address the main feeding and management strategies that can be utilized to minimize feed sorting by dairy and beef cattle.

KEYWORDS: diet; particle; preference; ration; rejection; sorting