Main Article Content
A feeding trial was conducted to assess the effect of incorporating dried green aquatic fern Azolla (Azolla microphylla) in the diet of lactating Murrah buffaloes. Ten multiparous Murrah buffaloes with an average body weight of 499.34±20.71 kg, parity of 2.4±0.31, average milk yield of 11.29±0.51 kg and average days in milk 30.40±3.86 were distributed randomly into two equal groups. One of the groups served as control and fed concentrate mixture prepared by Wheat bran, Maize grain, Mustard cake, Cotton seed cake, Groundnut cake, mineral mixture, and salt, while in treatment group 10% of the dried Azolla was incorporated in the concentrate mixture to make both the concentrate mixtures iso-nitrogenous and iso-caloric. Milk quantity was recorded and milk components including protein, fat, lactose, solids not fat and total solids were assessed at the day before starting experimental feeding and followed by a weekly interval for four week.
After 28 days of experimental feeding no significant (P>0.05) effect was apparent on total milk production, but fall in production of fat corrected milk was 23.54% in the control group as compared to only 8.24% in the Treatment group, which indicated the superiority of Azolla based concentrate mixture over control concentrate mixture. No significant (P>0.05) variation was also observed in the quality of milk produced including milk protein, fat, lactose, solids not fat and total solids between the milk of buffaloes fed with two different concentrate mixtures. Results indicated that feeding of concentrate mixture consisting of 10% dried Azolla helped to maintain the production of fat corrected milk in early lactating Murrah buffaloes without affecting the intake of nutrients.
AOAC, International. 2000. Official Methods of Analysis of AOAC International, 17th ed. Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA.
Chandewar, D.W. 2017. Effect of green Azolla (Azolla pinnata) feeding on production performance of crossbred cows. M.Sc. Thesis, Dr. Punjab Rao Deshmukh Krishi Vidyapeeth, Akola, India.
Chatterjee, A., P. Sharma, M.K. Ghosh, M. Mandal and P.K. Roy. 2013. Utilization of Azolla microphylla as feed supplement for crossbred cattle. International Journal of Agricultural Science and Food Technology, 4(3): 207-214. Available on: https://www.ripublication.com/ijafst_spl/ijafstv4n3spl_06.pdf
Goering, H.K. and P.J. Van Soest. 1970. Forage fiber analyses: Apparatus, reagents, procedures, and some applications. Agriculture Handbook. No. 379. Agricultural Research Service, United State Department of Agriculture, Washington DC, USA. p. 1-20. Available on: https://naldc.nal.usda.gov/download/CAT87209099/pdf
Gowda, N.K.S., A. Maneyer, S. Verma, N.C. Valleesha, G. Maya, D.T. Pal and K.P. Suresh. 2015. Azolla (Azolla pinnata) as a green feed supplement for dairy cattle - An on farm study. Anim. Nutr. Feed Technol., 15(2): 283-287. DOI: 10.5958/0974-181X.2015.00031.1
ICAR. 2012-2013. Annual Report. 2012-2013. Indian Council of Agricultural Research, National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal, India. Available on: https://ccari.icar.gov.in/annrep1213.pdf
ICAR. 2013. Nutrient Requirements of Animals - Cattle and Buffalo, Indian Council of Agricultural Research, National Institute of Animal Nutrition and Physiology, India.
Kumar, R., P. Tripathi, U.B. Chaudhary, R.B. Sharma and M.K. Tripathi. 2016. Replacement of concentrate mixture with dried Azolla on milk yield and quality in Barbari does. Anim. Nutr. Feed Technol., 16: 317-324. DOI:10.5958/0974-181X.2016.00027.5
Lavania, P., S.C. Jingar, H.L. Bugalia, S.M. Meena and A. Kumar. 2019. Effect of Azolla feeding as a supplement on milk and reproduction performance on zebu cattle under field condition. International Journal of Chemical Studies, 7(3): 3167-3168. Available on: https://www.chemijournal.com/archives/2019/vol7issue3/PartAY/7-3-222-164.pdf
Lumpkin, T.A. and D.L. Plucknett. 1982. Azolla as a Green Manure: Use and Management in Crop Production. Westview Press Inc., Boulder, Colorado, USA. p. 230.
Meena, G.S., B.L. Dhaka, B. Singh, R.K. Meena and K.C. Meena. 2017. Effect of Azolla as feed supplement on milk yield in Buffaloes. International Journal of Current Microbiology and Applied, 6(12): 3490-3494. DOI: 10.20546/ijcmas.2017.612.406
Murthy, T.N.K., M. Ashok, T. Thirumalesh, B.U. Umesh and O.R. Nataraju. 2013. Effect of partial replacement of Azolla for concentrate supplement on lactating crossbred cows. Environment and Ecology, 31(2): 415-417.
Prabina, B.J. and K. Kumar. 2010. Dried Azolla as a nutritionally rich cost-effective and immuno-modulatory feed supplement for broilers. The Asian Journal of Animal Science, 5(1): 20-22. Available on: https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/FullTextPDF/2010/20103277005.pdf
Rawat, N., K. Kumari, F. Singh and V.R. Gilhare. 2015. Effect of Azolla-supplemented feeding on milk production of cattle and production performance of broilers. Applied Biological Research, 17(2): 214-218. DOI: 10.5958/0974-4517.2015.00031.2
Regar, J.K. 2016. Effect of different feed supplements on nutrients utilization and milk production in cross-bred cows. M.Sc. Thesis, Sri Karan Narendra Agriculture University Jobner, India.
Roy, D., V. Kumar, M. Kumar, R. Sirohi, Y. Singh and J.K. Singh. 2016. Effect of feeding Azolla pinnata on growth performance, feed intake, nutrient digestibility and blood biochemical’s of Hariana heifers fed on roughage based diet. Indian J. Dairy Sci., 69(2): 190-196. DOI: 10.5146/IJDS.V69I2.50583.G23860
Sharma, P. 2013. Comparative nutritional evaluation and effect of supplementation of Azolla microphylla on milk yield and composition in crossbreed cattle. Ph.D. Thesis, National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal, India.
Singh, K.M., R.K.P. Singh, A.K. Jha and A. Kumar. 2013. A micro analysis of fodder production and marketing in India: The case of Bihar. Indian J. Anim. Sci., 85(12): 1379-1383. Available on: https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/213955541.pdf
Singh, P.K. and B.P.R. Subudhi. 1978. Utilize Azolla in poultry feed. Indian Farming, 27: 37-39.
Singh, B., G.S. Meena, K.C. Meena, R.K. Meena, B. Singh and D. Indoria. 2017. Effect of a wonder herb Azolla on buffaloes milk yield. International Journal of Current Microbiology and Applied Sciences, 6(11): 1059-1066. DOI: 10.20546/ijcmas.2017.611.124
SPSS. 2011. Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) Version 20.0. IBM, SPSS Inc., USA.