The intakes and apparent total tract and partial digestibility of nutrients in Holstein x Zebu steers fed diets formulated with four dietary CP levels (9,11,13, and 15%), in DM basis were evaluated. Four rumen and abomasum cannulated castrated animals, averaging initial weight of 343.5 kg, were allotted to a 4 x 4 Latin square design, with four animal and four periods. Each experimental period lasted 18 days (first 10 for adaptation period). The dietary CP levels did not affect the intakes of DM, OM, NDF and TDN, while the CP and EE intakes increased and NFC intake decreased, with the increment of dietary CP. The total apparent digestibility of CP linearly increased with the CP levels of the diets. The intestinal and ruminal digestibilities of the nutritive components were not affected by the CP levels of the diets, except for the NDF intestinal digestibility, that increased 2.66 units per each percent increase of CP in the diet. The CP levels ranging from 9 to 15% of DM in the diet of crossbred Holstein x Zebu steers in the growing phase increased the intakes of CP and EE as well as the total apparent digestibility CP.
acid detergent fiber; acid detergent insoluble nitrogen; lignin; neutral detergent fiber; neutral detergent insoluble nitrogen; non-fibrous carbohydrate