Effects of supplement type and narasin inclusion on supplement intake by Bos indicus beef bulls grazing a warm-season forage.
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This study aimed to evaluate the effects of supplement type and narasin inclusion on the frequency and supplement intake of grazing Bos indicus beef bulls. Four hundred animals were ranked by initial BW (383 35 kg) and allocated into one of four paddocks of Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marand (100 animals/paddock). Paddocks were randomly assigned to receive either a mineral salt (MIN) or a protein-energetic supplement (PREN) containing or not narasin (N) for a 90-d period. An individual electronic data capture system with 11 feed bunks was used to individually measure supplement intake and meal frequency in each paddock. The evaluations and analysis of individual intake, frequency of visits to the feeder, and intake per visit (I/V) were performed every 15 d and classified as periods (PR1 through PR6). All data were analyzed as a 2 2 factorial design with the PROC MIXED procedure of SAS. A supplement type N PR interaction was observed (P < 0.0001) for daily supplement intake. No differences were observed between MIN, whereas PREN had a greater (P 0.03) supplement intake on PR1 and PR3, but a reduced supplement intake on PR6 compared with PREN + N (P = 0.02). Moreover, no supplement type N interaction (P = 0.47) or N (P = 0.44) effects were observed for daily supplement intake in the present study. A supplement type N PR interaction was detected (P < 0.0001) for the frequency of visits in the feeders. Throughout the experimental period, animals from the MIN + N had a greater (P 0.02) frequency of visits compared with MIN cohorts. A supplement effect was detected for I/V (P = 0.02), whereas neither a narasin effect (P = 0.74) nor interactions (P 0.16) were observed. Animals offered PREN had a greater I/V when compared with MIN cohorts (145 vs. 846 g/d for MIN and PREN, respectively; SEM = 16.1). When these data are reported as percentage of days visiting the feeder within each PR, MIN and MIN + N animals visited the feeder for 25.8% and 35.9% of the days, respectively. Conversely, no differences were observed (P = 0.65) in the overall mean visits per PR between PREN and PREN + N (12.8 vs. 12.3 d for PREN and PREN + N, respectively; SEM = 0.195). As percentage of days visiting the feeder, PREN and PREN + N visited the feeder for 85.1% and 81.9% of the days, respectively. In summary, narasin inclusion did not reduce supplement intake, regardless of supplement type, but increased the frequency of visits to the feeder for the MIN treatment.