This experiment was designed to test the effect of inclusion rate of 3-nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP), a methane inhibitor, on enteric methane emissions in dairy cows. The study was conducted with 49 multiparous Holstein cows in a randomized complete block design in 2 phases; phase 1 was with 28 cows, and phase 2 with 21 cows. Cows were fed a basal total mixed ration ad libitum and were blocked based on days in milk, milk yield, and enteric methane emissions during a 14-d covariate period. Treatments were control (no 3-NOP) and 40, 60, 80, 100, 150, and 200 mg of 3-NOP/kg of feed dry matter. Following a 14-d adaptation period, enteric gaseous emissions (methane, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen) were measured using the GreenFeed system (C-Lock Inc., Rapid City, SD) over a 3-d period. Compared with the control, inclusion rate of 3-NOP quadratically decreased daily enteric methane emissions from 22 to 40%. Maximum mitigation effect was achieved with the 3 highest 3-NOP doses (with no statistical difference among 100, 150, and 200 mg/kg). The decrease in methane emission yield and emission intensity ranged from 16 to 36% and from 25 to 45%, respectively. Emissions of hydrogen quadratically increased 6- to 10-fold, compared with the control; the maximum increase was with 150 mg/kg 3-NOP. Treatment did not affect daily emissions of carbon dioxide, but a linear increase in carbon dioxide emission yield was observed with increasing 3-NOP doses. Dry matter intake and milk yield of the cows was not affected by 3-NOP. Milk fat concentration and yield were increased by 3-NOP due to increased concentration of de novo synthetized short-chain fatty acids in milk. Inclusion of 3-NOP also tended to increase milk urea nitrogen but had no other effects on milk components. In this short-term experiment, 3-NOP decreased enteric methane emissions without affecting dry matter intake or milk yield and increased milk fat in dairy cows. Maximum mitigation effect was achieved at 100 to 200 mg/kg of feed dry matter.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Food Science
- Animal Science and Zoology