The effect of extended grazing time and supplementary forage on the dry matter intake and foraging behaviour of cattle kept under traditional African grazing systems
Chromium content of fecal samples that were mixed with Cr-mordanted rumen contents at 5 or 10 g/200 g feces in Experiment 1 and at 5 or 10 g/300 and 200 g feces in Experiment 2 was determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy. Recovery of Cr was estimated after digesting fecal samples, which were frozen fresh and later thawed or dried in either a forced draft oven at 60 degrees C or in a microwave oven in Experiment 1. Experiment 2 evaluated the efficacy of each of three methods of digestion in recovery of Cr from fecal samples. Recoveries of Cr from feces were calculated relative to the Cr content of the Cr-mordanted rumen contents, which were determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy of samples digested with concentrated nitric acid in the presence or absence of the wetting agent Tween 80. Recovery of Cr from fecal samples frozen fresh and later thawed was greater than that from either forced draft oven or from microwave oven-dried samples, especially when the concentrated nitric acid digestion was used. Neither the double ashing procedure nor the digestion with the weaker nitric acid did not improve Cr recoveries from the samples.