Effect of feeding sweet sorghum stover-based complete rations on the growth performance and carcass characteristics of ram lambs

The present study was carried out to evaluate the effect of sweet sorghum stover (cost $0.05/kg) supplementation as complete balanced diet (at 60 % level) on sheep performance, carcass characteristics and economics in comparison to maize stover (cost $0.08/kg) and sorghum stover (cost $0.09/kg) (conventional roughage sources). Eighteen Nellore ram lambs aged about 3 months (average body weight 15.65± 0.10 kg) were randomly allotted to three complete diets formulated with roughage to concentrate ratio of 60:40 (on dry matter basis) using sorghum stover (SS), maize stover (MS) and sweet sorghum stover (SSS) as roughage sources for a period of 120 days. The average daily dry matter intake (g/kg w0.75), average daily gain (grams) and feed conversion efficiency were similar among the experimental diets. No significant differences were observed among the treatment groups for the mean live weight (kg) at slaughter, empty body weight (kg) dressing percentage on live weight basis or on empty body weight basis, proportion of different wholesale cuts, percentage of edible offals and non-edible offals, proportion of meat, meat/bone ratio and chemical composition of meat. Thus, it can be concluded that sweet sorghum stover can be incorporated in the complete diets of lambs by replacing conventional roughages such as sorghum stover and maize