Estimation of Nutritive Values of Some Range Species as Indicators for Rangelands Management

Document Type : Research and Full Length Article


1 Rangeland Management, University of Kashan, Kashan.

2 Department of Rangeland and Watershed Management, University of Kashan, Kashan

3 Rangeland Management, University of Malayer, Malayer


Information on different rangeland plants’ nutritive values during various
phonological stages is of importance for the rangelands management. This information helps
rangeland managers to choose proper grazing times to achieve higher animal performance
with no detrimental effects on the rangeland vegetations. Effects of various plant parts’
phenological stages and vegetation types on reserve carbohydrates and forage quality
indicators were investigated during 2009 and 2010 in Sabzkooh rangelands at Charmahal
province, Iran. Plant samples were collected based on a Completely Randomized Design
(CRD) at 3 phonological stages (seedling, vegetative and flowering) with 5 replications. The
species included grasses (Secale montanum and Festuca ovina), forbs (Lotus corniculatus and
Sanguisorba minor) and shrubs (Kochia prosterata and Salsola rigida). Aerial plant parts’
samples were harvested and oven-dried at 80oC for 24 hours; then, they were analyzed for
determining the amounts of Water Soluble Carbohydrates (WSC), Crude Protein (CP), Acid
Detergent Fiber (ADF), Dry Matter Digestibility (DMD) and Metabolic Energy (ME). Results
showed that forbs contained more WSC as compared to the other two vegetation types
(grasses and shrubs). For other forage quality traits (CP, DMD, and ME), there were
significant differences between species over two years and higher and lower forage qualities
were obtained for forbs and shrub, respectively. For WSC, Sanguisorba minor and Lotus
corniculatus had the highest values while Secale montanum and Salsola rigida had the lowest
WSC content.