Productive evaluation of an association of improved grasses and Leucaena leucocephala cv. Cunningham with Mambí de Cuba cows under commercial conditions


Tania Sánchez Santana
Estación Experimental de Pastos y Forrajes Indio Hatuey Central España Republicana 44280, Matanzas, Cuba


In a dairy farm of the Matanzas Genetic Enterprise a study was carried out for five years  to determine the performance of the plant community and the productive indicators of Mambí de Cuba dairy cows, in an association of improved grasses and Leucaena leucocephala cv. Cunningham. The botanical composition was characterized by a predominance higher than 50% of Cynodon nlemfuensis cv. Jamaicano and Panicum maximum cv. Likoni, while leucaena maintained the plant densit y, as an adaptation to the conditions of the system. Total dry matter yield availability was higher tan 3 t/ha/rotation. The results of the in situ ruminal degradation and in vitro gas production techniques showed a better performance of the forages during the rainy season sampling; the highest rumen degradation rate was obtained in leucaena (0,03-0,04%/h-1). A coincidence between the real and the potential milk production curves was obtained, with efficiency over 85%, the highest values appearing in the rainy season. It is concluded that the association of improved grasses and leucaena show ed high dry matter availability and persistence of the pasturel and, with stability in production and nutritional quality during the whole year, which allows to maintain the total productions, perlactation (2030-2159 kg) and per hectare(2411-3535 kg), as well as adequate values of body condition, which is a reflection of the sustainability of the system. To use the associations of improved grasses and L. leucocephala cv. Cunningham for cattle milk production is recommended.