Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia
On-line version ISSN 1806-9290
ANDRADE, Carlos Mauricio Soares de; GARCIA, Rasmo; VALENTIM, Judson Ferreira and PEREIRA, Odilon Gomes. Dynamics of sward condition and botanical composition in mixed pastures of marandugrass, forage peanut and tropical kudzu. R. Bras. Zootec. [online]. 2012, vol.41, n.3, pp.501-511. ISSN 1806-9290. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-35982012000300005.
This study was carried out to evaluate the dynamics of sward condition and botanical composition of a mixed pasture of marandugrass (Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marandu), forage peanut (Arachis pintoi cv. Mandobi) and tropical kudzu (Pueraria phaseoloides), rotationally stocked at four daily forage allowance levels (6.6, 10.3, 14.3 and 17.9% of live weight). Sward condition was characterized in each stocking cycle by measuring pre- and post-grazing sward height, forage mass and percentage of bare ground. Botanical composition (grass, forage peanut, tropical kudzu and weeds) was evaluated before each stocking period. Swards under smaller forage allowances presented lower height, forage mass and ground cover. This condition favored the growth of forage peanut, which constituted 21.1, 15.2, 8.4 and 3.8% of forage mass in the last quarter of the experimental period, from the lowest to the highest forage allowance, respectively. Tropical kudzu was sensitive to all forage allowance levels and its percentage in the botanical composition was strongly reduced along the experimental period, especially during the dry season (July to September). Forage peanut cv. Mandobi and marandugrass form a more balanced mixture when pre-grazing sward height is maintained shorter than 45 cm. Tropical kudzu is intolerant to intensive grazing management systems when associated to marandugrass.
Keywords : Arachis pintoi; Brachiaria brizantha; legume; persistence; Pueraria phaseoloides; Western Amazon.