Tropical Animal Health and Production

, Volume 42, Issue 4, pp 561–567

Nutritive value of some tropical grasses used by traditional small farms in the highlands of Burundi

  • André Nivyobizi
  • Armand Deswysen
  • Daniel Dehareng
  • Alain Peeters
  • Yvan Larondelle


The objective was to estimate—according to the French feeding system—the nutritive value of three tropical grasses (Eragrostis olivacea, Setaria sphacelata and Tripsacum laxum) used in traditional small farms of Burundi. Dry matter (DM) yield was monitored on anti-erosive hedges or on small fields in 60 small farms for eight consecutive years. DM intake and digestibility values were measured on seven steers or seven male sheep. Degradability values were determined on three sheep. S. sphacelata exhibited higher DM yield (t ha−1), energy (UF, kg−1 DM) and protein (PDI, g kg−1 DM) values (17.3, 0.73 and 68, respectively) than T. laxum (9.11, 0.64 and 47) and E. olivacea (not determined, 0.46 and 42). The UF and PDI intakes of these grass species were able to meet only 51% to 92% of the energy and 59% to 133% of the protein requirements for maintenance of the experimental animals.


Nutritive value Tropical grasses In vivo In sacco Small farms 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • André Nivyobizi
    • 1
  • Armand Deswysen
    • 2
  • Daniel Dehareng
    • 3
  • Alain Peeters
    • 4
  • Yvan Larondelle
    • 1
  1. 1.Unité de biochimie de la nutritionUniversité catholique de LouvainLouvain la NeuveBelgium
  2. 2.Unité de génétique appliquéeUniversité catholique de LouvainLouvain la NeuveBelgium
  3. 3.Agence fédérale pour la sécurité de la chaîne alimentaire, Unité provinciale de contrôle du Brabant wallonOttigniesBelgium
  4. 4.Unité d’écologie des prairiesUniversité catholique de LouvainLouvain la NeuveBelgium

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