Nutritional composition of three fodder species browsed by camels (Camelus dromedarius) on arid area of Tunisia.

Department of Animal Health and Welfare, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Bari, 70010, Valenzano, Bari, Italy.
Tropical Animal Health and Production (Impact Factor: 1.09). 01/2009; 41(7):1219-24. DOI: 10.1007/s11250-008-9303-6
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Browsing camels have access to different plant species in relation to the kind of pasture they can reach. A study was conducted in an arid region of Southern Tunisia to determine the dietary preference and forage quality of free ranging camels. Foliage consisting of leaves from Limonium pruinosum, Retama raetam and Stipa tenacissima, was collected during the dry season to evaluate the chemical characteristics and nutritional value of these browse fodder species. The dietary preference was studied using 15 adult camels which were selected from a herd of 50 animals appropriately marked for identification. There was a significant difference in the chemical composition and nutritional value of plant species collected. Based on crude protein (CP) content and nutritional value, the three fodder species browsed can be recommended as good-quality food source for camels under pastoral management.

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