High concentrations of dietary nitrogen have been associated with reductions in the fertility of dairy cows, but the evidence is not conclusive and many studies have shown little or no effect. This paper reviews recent investigations of the effect of rapidly degradable sources of nitrogen on parameters of fertility, and concludes that high levels of dietary nitrogen do not routinely reduce fertility, even at intakes above those in normal dairy cow diets. It also concludes that cows may be able to adapt to high nitrogen diets so that diets that may reduce their fertility when introduced at critical periods, for example, when they are inseminated, do not reduce it when introduced at an earlier stage.
- British Veterinary Association. All rights reserved.
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