Effect of Pisum sativum as protein supplement on buffalo milk production
ABSTRACT A study was carried out at an organic buffalo dairy farm in order to investigate the effect of feeding protein peas (Pisum sativum L.) as an alternative protein source for buffalo cow diets. Two concentrates were formulated to contain (as fed basis) either 350 g/kg of soybean cake (SC) or 450 g/kg of peas (PC) as the main protein sources. The two concentrates were formulated to be almost isonitrogenous (on average crude protein 240 g/kg DM). Two groups of 10 buffalo cows were used in a 100-day lactation study (from 10 days in milk onwards). Cows were blocked into two groups according to lactation number and previous milk yield and were assigned to one of two dietary treatments: control group was offered in the milking parlour 3 kg of SC, while treatment group was offered the same quantity of PC. All cows were fed a total mixed ration containing 3 kg of SC. Daily milk yield was not affected by treatment, as well as, milk fat and protein percentages, somatic cell count, urea content and fatty acid composition.