DOI: 10.3390/ani14010052 ISSN: 2076-2615

Application of Near-Infrared Reflectance Spectroscopy for Predicting Chemical Composition of Feces in Holstein Dairy Cows and Calves

Yiming Xu, Tianyu Chen, Hongxing Zhang, Yiliyaer Nuermaimaiti, Siyuan Zhang, Fei Wang, Jianxin Xiao, Shuai Liu, Wei Shao, Zhijun Cao, Jingjun Wang, Yong Chen
  • General Veterinary
  • Animal Science and Zoology

Traditional methods for determining the chemical composition of cattle feces are uneconomical. In contrast, near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) has emerged as a successful technique for assessing chemical compositions. Therefore, in this study, the feasibility of NIRS in terms of predicting fecal chemical composition was explored. Cattle fecal samples were subjected to chemical analysis using conventional wet chemistry techniques and a NIRS spectrometer. The resulting fecal spectra were used to construct predictive equations to estimate the chemical composition of the feces in both cows and calves. The coefficients of determination for calibration (RSQ) were employed to evaluate the calibration of the predictive equations. Calibration results for cows (dry matter [DM], RSQ = 0.98; crude protein [CP], RSQ = 0.93; ether extract [EE], RSQ = 0.91; neutral detergent fiber [NDF], RSQ = 0.82; acid detergent fiber [ADF], RSQ = 0.89; ash, RSQ = 0.84) and calves (DM, RSQ = 0.92; CP, RSQ = 0.89; EE, RSQ = 0.77; NDF, RSQ = 0.76; ADF, RSQ = 0.92; ash, RSQ = 0.97) demonstrated that NIRS is a cost-effective and efficient alternative for assessing the chemical composition of dairy cattle feces. This provides a new method for rapidly predicting fecal chemical content in cows and calves.

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