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Abstract

Five species of dominant halophyte plants including: Salsola griffithii, Chenopodium album, Aeluropus logopoidies, Alopecurus textillis and Cardaria draba were sampled from Sistan region at their late vegetative stage. The collected samples were dried at room temperature and ground, and their chemical components including: dry matter, organic matter, ash, crude protein, crude fat, as well as cell wall and no hemicellulose containing cell wall evaluated in the laboratory. Dry matter digestibility (by in situ nylon bag technique) and organic matter digestibility as well as metabolisable energy (through in vitro gas production method) were determined. Results revealed that among the species studied, there were significant differences (p<0.05) in terms of chemical composition. Crude protein, cell wall and no hemicellulose containing cell wall ranged from 5.93 to 14.73, NDF from 34.30 to 66.82 while ADF from 13.64 to 41.46 % ( DM basis) respectively. The ash content was recorded the highest (46.87%) for Salsola griffithii but ranged from 12.63 to 16.18% as regards the other species. OM digestibility ranged from 66.13 to 76.24%. It was significantly the highest in Salsola griffithii while the lowest in Cadaria draba. The organic matter digestability rate in dry matter in salt grass (due to the high ash content), was the lowest (40.51%), and metabolisable energy also significantly (p<0.05) lower than in the other species (6.95 vs 9.47 to 10.37 Mj/ kg). Regarding the degradability parameters and effective degradability there were also significant differences observed among species (p<0.05).

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