NUTRITIONAL VALUE OF FIVE TROPICAL LEGUMES HAY HARVESTED AT DIFFERENT STAGES OF GROWTH IN THE SUB-HUMID ZONE OF NIGERIA

S. A. Abubakar, S. S. Sani, S. B. Abdu, M. R. Hassan, S. L. Abdulrahman

Abstract


An experiment was conducted to investigate the nutrient composition, mineral contents and cell wall fractions of some selected tropical legumes harvested at 60, 70, 80 and 90 days after sowing (DAS). The legumes are Mucuna pruriens, Centrosema pascourum, Alysicarpus vaginalis, Lablab purpureus and Vigna unguiculata. The nutrient concentration in all the forages varies with the stages of harvest. There was no significant (P > 0.05) variation in chemical composition of all the legumes studied except for the percentage EE that was highest (1.02%) in Centrosema pascourum and lowest (0.78%) in Alysicarpus vaginalis. The mineral constituent also showed no significant (P>0.05) difference in all the legumes understudied except for Phosphorus which was highest in Mucuna pruriens (0.477 ppm) and lowest (0.062 ppm) in A. vaginalis. Legumes harvested at earlier stage may assume high quality material but this study will serve as a guide on squality of hay material to be conserved by stockowners for dry season feeding. It is advocated that stockmen should give more research attention to such legumes hay conservation practice.

Keywords


Hay, stages of growth, sub-humid Nigeria, tropical legumes

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