ISSN: 0041-3216

ISSN: 0041-3216 (Online), 0041-3216 (Print)
Volume 96 2019. Commemorative Issue 95 Years
Research Papers
Chemical composition and in vitro dry matter degradability of mistletoe (Viscum verrucosum (Harv.)) on Vachellia nilotica (L.) in North West Province of South Africa)
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There is a dearth of information on the nutritive value of mistletoe (Viscum verrucosum (Harv)) as a potential feed source for ruminant animals in different growth environments. This study was conducted to determine the chemical composition and in vitro dry matter degradability (DMD) of mistletoe growing on Vachellia nilotica L., a common browse tree, at three growth sites (Lokaleng, Tsetse and Ramatlabama) in the North West Province of South Africa. The study found no site effects on neutral detergent fibre, acid detergent fibre, acid detergent lignin, organic matter and crude protein contents of mistletoe harvested from the three sites. Mistletoe plants harvested from Tsetse had a higher dry matter content (956.1 g/kg) than plant from Lokaleng (927.3 g/kg) and Ramatlabama (855.3 g/kg). Plants from Lokaleng had a higher potassium content (112.7 g/kg) than those from Ramatlabama (83.5 g/kg). Plants from Tsetse had lower magnesium and sodium (5.31 g/kg and 0.89 g/kg, respectively) contents than those from Lokaleng (8.07 g/kg and 1.43 g/kg, respectively). Plants from Ramatlabama had the highest iodine content (3.82 g/kg), followed by those from Lokaleng (0.510 g/kg) and the lowest levels were found in plants from Tsetse (0.228 g/kg). The in vitro DMD at 2, 4, 8, 12, 24, 36, 48 and 72 hours of mistletoe plants, from the three sites were the same (p > 0.05). Therefore, in this area, growth location influences chemical composition but not in vitro DMD of mistletoe plants, and site-specific recommendations for mineral supplementation can be made to resource-poor farmers as required.
Keywords: Viscum verrucosum (Harv), dry matter degradation, ruminants Animal Science and Ruminant nutrition