Product quality and a sustainable food chain of ruminant products are largely determined by animal nutrition, in which forage is the major feed source. Forages and grasslands play a unique role in agriculture because they contribute through animals to our food supply and to the abatement of environmental problems. Interest in grassland management and grass utilization for dairy production in temperate and subtropical regions has recently led to considerable research efforts. In the past this research often emphasized on plant and animal aspects separately. However, the interrelationship between pasture and the grazing ruminant is a dynamic, two-way process. Many people are not aware of these complex relations, and scientists often focus on either soil-plant interactions, plant production, animal nutrition, animal production or product quality issues.
This book contains the contributions of active researchers and leading experts in the field of grassland management and grass utilization. Chapters are arranged in an order that allows progressive development within the food chain, moving from the big picture to basic principles of grassland management and effects on herbage quality, intake and nutrient flows.
Preface.- 1. Achieving high dry matter intake from pasture with grazing dairy cows.- 2. Species-rich swards of the Alps ? constraints and opportunities for dairy production.- 3. Cultivar effects of perennial ryegrass on herbage intake by grazing dairy cows.- 4. Nutrient management under grazing.-5. Grazing systems and feed supplementation.- 6. Grassland management with emphasis on N flows.- 7. Nitrogen utilization of perennial ryegrass in dairy cows.- 8. Grassland management with emphasis on grazing behaviour.- 9. Improving dry matter intake of perennial ryegrass pastures by dairy cows.- 10. Lipids in herbage, their fate in the rumen of dairy cows and implications for milk quality.
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