The effect of environmental temperature on the energy metabolism of cattle

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Rogerson A.
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The suitability of farm animals for a tropical or subtropical environment has usually been assessed on the basis of physiological response to imposed climatic stress. Although this approach remains of great importance there has sometimes been a tendency to neglect the study of a considerable part of the heat load of an animal, namely, its heat production, and the factors which might affect the extent of this energy loss. The heat production might vary depending on the breed, size and conformation of the animal, the quantity and quality of the forage available and the proximity of an adequate water supply. Such factors, to name only a few, are of importance over large areas of East Africa where the 'conservation' of fodder for the dry season is largely dependent on the desiccated 'standing hay' left over from the flush of grass following the rains. This dry grass, apart from often being in short supply, is usually of very poor feeding value, with the result that the cattle have to exist on sub maintenance rations for prolonged periods.
East African Agricultural And Forestry Journal, 55, p. 359-364