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Journal of Animal Science Abstract - Animal Nutrition

Effects of increasing field pea (Pisum sativum) level in high-concentrate diets on growth performance and carcass traits in finishing steers and heifers


This article in

  1. Vol. 87 No. 10, p. 3335-3341
    Received: Jan 9, 2009
    Accepted: June 15, 2009
    Published: December 5, 2014

    1 Corresponding author(s):

  1. G. P. Lardy* 1 ,
  2. B. A. Loken*,
  3. V. L. Anderson,
  4. D. M. Larson* 2 ,
  5. K. R. Maddock-Carlin*,
  6. B. R. Ilse,
  7. R. Maddock*,
  8. J. L. Leupp*,
  9. R. Clark,
  10. J. A. Paterson and
  11. M. L. Bauer*
  1. Department of Animal Sciences, NDSU Dept. 7630, North Dakota State University, PO Box 6050, Fargo 58108-6050;
    Carrington Research Extension Center, North Dakota State University, Carrington 58421; and
    Department of Animal and Range Sciences, Montana State University, PO Box 172900, Bozeman 59717-2900


Three experiments were conducted to determine the effect of increasing field pea level in high-concentrate finishing cattle diets on ADG, DMI, G:F, and carcass traits, and to estimate the NE of field pea. In Exp. 1, 118 yearling heifers (417.9 ± 2.4 kg initial BW) were blocked by initial BW and assigned randomly to 1 of 4 treatments (0, 10, 20, or 30% dry-rolled field pea, DM basis; 4 pens/treatment). In Exp. 2, 143 beef steers (433 ± 19 kg initial BW) were blocked by BW and assigned randomly to 1 of 4 treatments (0, 10, 20, or 30% dry-rolled field pea, DM basis; 6 pens/treatment). In Exp. 3, 80 beef steers (372.4 ± 0.4 kg initial BW) were assigned randomly to 1 of 4 treatments (0, 18, 27, or 36% cracked field pea, DM basis; 4 pens/treatment). Field pea replaced a portion of the grain (dry-rolled and high moisture corn, dry-rolled corn, and barley and barley sprouts; Exp. 1, 2, and 3, respectively) and protein supplement. In Exp. 1, field pea inclusion decreased DMI linearly (P = 0.03), whereas ADG and G:F were not affected by treatment (P ≥ 0.17); however, dietary NEg increased quadratically with increasing field pea level (P = 0.04). Fat thickness responded quadratically (P = 0.008) where heifers fed 20% field pea had greatest fat thickness and 30% field pea inclusion the least. Marbling tended (P ≤ 0.09) to respond quadratically as field pea increased. No differences (P ≥ 0.17) were observed for HCW, LM area, or KPH. In Exp. 2, DMI, ADG, G:F, dietary NEg, HCW, marbling, LM area, 12th-rib fat, and USDA yield grade (YG) were unaffected by dietary field pea inclusion (P ≥ 0.12). In Exp. 3, marbling score increased linearly (P = 0.05), fat thickness increased quadratically (P = 0.01), and YG tended to increase (P = 0.07) quadratically as field pea increased. Field pea inclusion did not affect (P ≥ 0.38) DMI, ADG, G:F, dietary NEg, HCW, or LM area. These results indicate that field pea can be included successfully into rations at levels up to 36% of DM without negatively affecting growth performance and most carcass characteristics of finishing beef cattle; however, effects on marbling score were variable. These data also indicate the energy content of field peas is similar to cereal grains, such as corn and barley, when included in high-concentrate finishing diets.

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