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Estimation of grass biomass consumed by rabbits housed in movable paddocks

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Estimation of grass biomass consumed by rabbits housed in movable paddocks

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dc.contributor.author Plagnet, Anne-Sophie es_ES
dc.contributor.author Bannelier, Carole es_ES
dc.contributor.author Fillon, Valerie es_ES
dc.contributor.author Savietto, Davi es_ES
dc.date.accessioned 2023-04-20T12:04:54Z
dc.date.available 2023-04-20T12:04:54Z
dc.date.issued 2023-03-31
dc.identifier.issn 1257-5011
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10251/192875
dc.description.abstract [EN] Biomass allowance is a key feature in pasture-based rabbit production systems. It conditions not only the stock density (rabbits/m²) and/or the number of grazing days, it also influences the grazing behaviour of animals. When herbage restriction occurs, pelleted feed and/or cereal intake goes up. Inadequate pasture management may also impair the biomass quantity and quality if overgrazing occurs. To avoid the undesirable effects of overgrazing and better manage pellet and cereal intake, information on both biomass availability and rabbits grazing capacity are needed. Here, we present an adaptation of the rising plate meter method (developed for biomass intake measures for ruminants) for use in rabbit. To this end, we designed an experiment where two groups of 12 rabbits each were kept in two different fields: under an apple orchard (AO) or on fallow land (FL). We followed the animals for 5 consecutive weeks (from 45 to 80 d old). Rabbits lived in 25 m² movable paddocks, and every week a new paddock location (called paddock-spot) was made available for them. At each new paddock-spot, we measured the herbage height inside the paddocks and performed samplings of the available biomass (i.e. herbage cut after herbage height measurement) outside the paddocks. From this data we estimated the available biomass inside each paddock-spot by fitting linear regression equations of biomass to herbage height. Overall, rabbits in the AO and FL had access to 1328±65.7 and 1386±58.6 kg of dry matter (DM) per ha, respectively. In every field and paddock-spot, the biomass available was lower than the rabbits grazing capacity; overgrazing was the rule. Roughly, and under a restricted herbage allowance, rabbits in the AO ingested 45.2 g DM/d and rabbits in the FL 43.4 g DM/d. In the last week (64 to 80 d old), the biomass intake of rabbits in the AO and AL represented 26.4 and 23.5% of the total DM intake, respectively. These values, however, does not represent the real grazing capacity of growing rabbits. In this study, we provide some advice on the sampling method to obtain reliable biomass estimations and we mention two methods for handling influential observations in linear regression. es_ES
dc.description.sponsorship We would like to acknowledge the INRAE founding programme METABIO and INRAE - PHASE Action 3.4 for financing this study es_ES
dc.language Inglés es_ES
dc.publisher Universitat Politècnica de València es_ES
dc.relation.ispartof World Rabbit Science es_ES
dc.rights Reconocimiento - No comercial - Compartir igual (by-nc-sa) es_ES
dc.subject Oryctolagus cuniculus es_ES
dc.subject Biomass es_ES
dc.subject Cage-free housing es_ES
dc.subject Grazing es_ES
dc.subject Rising plate meter es_ES
dc.subject Rabbit es_ES
dc.title Estimation of grass biomass consumed by rabbits housed in movable paddocks es_ES
dc.type Artículo es_ES
dc.identifier.doi 10.4995/wrs.2023.18243
dc.rights.accessRights Abierto es_ES
dc.description.bibliographicCitation Plagnet, A.; Bannelier, C.; Fillon, V.; Savietto, D. (2023). Estimation of grass biomass consumed by rabbits housed in movable paddocks. World Rabbit Science. 31(1):21-34. https://doi.org/10.4995/wrs.2023.18243 es_ES
dc.description.accrualMethod OJS es_ES
dc.relation.publisherversion https://doi.org/10.4995/wrs.2023.18243 es_ES
dc.description.upvformatpinicio 21 es_ES
dc.description.upvformatpfin 34 es_ES
dc.type.version info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion es_ES
dc.description.volume 31 es_ES
dc.description.issue 1 es_ES
dc.identifier.eissn 1989-8886
dc.relation.pasarela OJS\18243 es_ES
dc.contributor.funder Institut National de Recherche pour l'Agriculture, l'Alimentation et l'Environnement, Francia es_ES
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