Nitrate supplementation in grazing dairy cows

Ishaya U. Gadzama & Fernando Diaz

Sources of non-protein nitrogen (NPN) such as urea or nitrate are attractive to include in the diet of ruminants because of their low cost relative to vegetable protein. The amount of NPN that can be used in diets however is limited due to their rapid hydrolysis to ammonia in the rumen. This results in a rapid peak in rumen ammonia concentration within the first hour after consumption. In addition, nitrate has been proposed as a feed additive to mitigate enteric methane emissions.

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