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Volume 7, Issue 1, February Issue - 2019, Pages:74-85

Authors: Ashraf Alkhtib, Emily Burton, Barbara Rischkowsky, Jane Wamatu
Abstract: This study attempted to generate simple and robust models to predict metabolizable energy (ME) content of barley, chickpea and lentil straw using chemical composition. Crude protein (CP), neutral detergent fiber (NDF), acid detergent fiber (ADF), acid detergent lignin (ADL) and ME of 1933, 487 and 489 straw samples of barley, chickpea and lentil respectively were determined using near infrared reflectance spectroscopy. The samples belonged to 1933 genotypes of barley, 79 genotypes of chickpea and 66 genotypes of lentil. Barley samples were collected from experimental locations of International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas, Morocco. Chickpea and lentil samples were collected from Ethiopian Institute of agricultural Research experimental locations. Data of each crop was randomly divided into two sets, a training set (75% of the data) and a deployment set (25% of the data). Crude protein, NDF, ADF and ADL were regressed on ME and Box-cox transformed ME of the training sets to generate prediction models. Coefficients of these models were used to calculate residuals and prediction error (PE) in both training and deployment sets. Criteria used in the screening algorithm were low PE (95th percentile of PE≤4) and homogenous residuals in both training and deployment sets. Barley and chickpea models were unable to predict ME of deployment samples with a 95th percentile of PE less than 4. Heterogeneity of residuals of the deployment set was found in lentil model (positive residuals= 64% of overall residuals). Accordingly, chemical composition from NIR is a poor predictor for ME of straws of barley, chickpea and lentil to formulate rations for farm management and a direct measurement of ME of these straws is still required.
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