The Effect of Oak Kernel on Digestibility and Fermentative Characteristics in Arabian Sheep

Document Type : Ruminant Nutrition


Faculty of Animal Science and Food Technology, Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources University of Khuzestan, Khuzestan, Iran.


The objective of this experiment was to study the effect of oak kernel on fermentative and microbial characteristics in Arabian sheep. Sixteen sheep were used (average weight of 45±3 kg) in a completely randomized design. Treatments were four levels of oak kernel (0, 21, 42 and 63% DM). Animals were fed experimental diets for 28 days. Faecal with the ort feed of eight sheep collected for measured apparent digestibility during the last 5 days in the experiment. Rumen fluid obtained from all animals was used for gas production technique and measured fermentation parameters. Results showed that digestibility of dry matter of diets (respectively 63/55, 70/70, 71/73 and 75/80) increased linearly with increasing levels of oak. The rumen pH (respectively 6.29, 6/23, 6/17 and 5/90) and concentration of ammonia nitrogen (respectively 15/66, 13/75, 13/58 and 13/11) significantly reduced by increasing the level oak in the diet. Potential gas production, digestibility of ADF and NDF, digestible organic matter using gas production techniques were not affected by the experimental rations. So the No negative effect of oak kernel tannin. Oak kernel can be used as a source of carbohydrate and energy in sheep rations.