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Title: The measurement of draught ruminant energy expenditure in the field
Author: Dijkman, Johannes T.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1994
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The aim of this work was improve and validate the Oxylog portable oxygen consumption meter for use with draught ruminants, and to test its ability to estimate the energy expenditure of these animals in the field. Few data were available on the energy costs of the various tasks that draught ruminants perform and it was expected that the calorific factors established during laboratory experiments may not necessarily reflect the energy consumption during field work with farmers. This could have important implications in the establishment of the nutritional requirements of draught ruminants. A review of the literature on the various techniques and instruments available for the field measurement of energy consumption was carried out. A new facemask for use with the Oxylog was designed and the Oxylog equipment with this mask was validated against the open circuit gas analysis system available at the Centre for Tropical Veterinary Medicine in Edinburgh. It was found that the Oxylog on average over-estimated oxygen consumption, as measured by the gas analysis system, by 1.5%. In the second experiment, carried out with buffaloes and oxen pulling carts on the Unipalma oil-palm plantation in Meta, Colombia, the modified Oxylog system was tested in the field. Technically, the method worked satisfactorily, although the small digital displays on the Oxylog were difficult to read, and the measurements obtained generally agreed with the more established calculation methods of estimating energy consumption. It was concluded that the use of the modified Oxylog was an accurate and reliable method for the estimation of energy expenditure in the field.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available