The aim of this experiment was to evaluate, by means of the semi-automated in vitro gas production technique, fermentation kinetics of carbohydrates and degradability of dry matter (DM) and organic matter (OM) of diets containing oldman saltbush hay levels (8.4; 18.8; 31.2 and 48.3%) associated to forage cactus in natura. Pressure readings of the gases were done with a pressure transducer at 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 17, 20, 24, 28, 34, 48, 72 and 96h post-inoculation. The rumen kinetics was described by the following parameters: maximum potential of gas production, lag time and production rates of gas (k), fibrous carbohydrates (FC) and non-fibrous carbohydrates (NFC). It could be observed that the addition of oldman saltbush hay to the diets promoted a quadratic effect in the production of gases originated from NFC. However, there was no significant effect on the production of gases originated from FC and on production rates of gases from NFC and FC. The degradability of DM and OM did not differ due to the addition of oldman saltbush hay. The use of 8.4% hay and 74.9% forage cactus promoted the maximum potential of production of gases from the fibrous fraction of diets containing cactus and oldman saltbush hay.
Atriplex nummularia; degradability; forages; Opuntia ficus indica