Abstract #T251

# T251
Evaluation of acidified milk for feeding dairy calves in tropical climates.
M. G. Coelho1, F. L. M. Silva*1, M. D. Silva1, A. P. Silva1, A. C. Silva1, J. Hartmann1, C. M. M. Bittar1, 1ESALQ, University of Sao Paulo, Piracicaba, Sao Paulo Brazil.

The acidification of milk is used as a way of maintain low bacteriological load. In the tropical climate, the high temperatures can make the use of this technique difficult, increasing diarrhea occurrence and reducing animal’s performance. During the summer (max. 29°C; min.17.4°C), 44 male and female Holstein newborn calves were used in a randomized blocks experimental design and fed different liquid feed: commercial milk replacer (20.7% CP; 15.5% fat; 12.5% solids); whole milk; and acidified milk. Milk was acidified to a pH of 4.2 with lactic acid, 12–24h before feeding, and kept in room temperature. Animals were individually housed with free access to water and concentrate. Calves were fed 6L/d of liquid diet (2 meals) until weaning at 56 d. Acidified milk resulted in performance and blood metabolites similar to that observed for whole milk, with higher weight gain and lower fecal scores as compared with milk replacer. Acidify whole milk to pH 4.2 is a good alternative to store the milk in high environmental temperatures for feeding dairy calves. Table 1.
Milk replacerWhole milkAcidified milkTAT × A
 Concentrate, g/d245.8395.2344,263.040.095<0.00010.512
 Liquid diet, L/d5,424.8b5,634.6a5,624.5a42.490.002<0.00010.01
Fecal score2.48c1.79a1.98b0.069<0.0001<0.00010.122
Weight at birth, kg33.
Weight at weaning, kg38.5b48.4a48.0a1.67<0.0001<0.0001<0.0001
Weight gain, kg/d0.234b0.631a0.640a0.0304<0.0001<0.0001<0.0001
Glucose, mg/dL113.2b127.6a119.2b2.910.0010.01150.083
Lactate, mg/dL10.511.111.60.620.4829<0.00010.0256
Protein, g/dL6.09b6.62a6.63a0.1220.0017<0.00010.335
BHB, mmol/L0.112b0.157a0.155a0.00740.0002<0.00010.1647
abcMeans with different letters within a row indicate statistical difference (P < 0.05). 1T = treatment effect; A = age effect; T × A: Interaction treatment × age effect.

Key Words: lactic acid, liquid diet, pH