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Ingestive mastication in horses resembles rumination but not ingestive mastication in cattle and camels


Dittmann, Marie T; Kreuzer, Michael; Runge, Ullrich; Clauss, Marcus (2017). Ingestive mastication in horses resembles rumination but not ingestive mastication in cattle and camels. Journal of Experimental Zoology. Part A, Ecological and Integrative Physiology, 327(2-3):98-109.

Abstract

Horses achieve a higher degree of particle size reduction through ingestive mastication than functional ruminants.We characterized mastication using chew-monitoring halters (RumiWatch) in six domestic horses, cattle, and Bactrian camels each. All animals were offered grass hay of the same batch for 15 min. In cattle and camels, measurements were continued after eating until rumination was observed. Except for one horse, 96% of the horses’ ingestive mastication datawere identified as “rumination” by the proprietary RumiWatch algorithm, whereas ingestion and rumination by cattle and camels were mostly classified correctly. There were no systematic differences between cattle and camels. In cattle and camels, ingestive mastication was less regular than rumination, indicated by significantly higher standard deviations of chewing peak intervals, peak heights, and peak breadths in intraindividual comparisons. The average standard deviations of these measures were lower in horses than in cattle and camel ingestive mastication, indicating a more consistent chewing pattern in horses. Horse valueswere similar to those of rumination mastication, suggesting equally regular chewing motions. Regular, rhythmic chewing represents a common feature of horses and functional ruminants, but the less uniform ingestive mastication in functional ruminants represents a deviating pattern, the adaptive value of which remains unclear. In particular, it does not appear to promote a higher ingestion rate. A potential cause may be the avoidance of high tooth wear rates by delaying a more regular, systematic mastication until ingesta has been softened and the grit has been washed off in the forestomach.

Abstract

Horses achieve a higher degree of particle size reduction through ingestive mastication than functional ruminants.We characterized mastication using chew-monitoring halters (RumiWatch) in six domestic horses, cattle, and Bactrian camels each. All animals were offered grass hay of the same batch for 15 min. In cattle and camels, measurements were continued after eating until rumination was observed. Except for one horse, 96% of the horses’ ingestive mastication datawere identified as “rumination” by the proprietary RumiWatch algorithm, whereas ingestion and rumination by cattle and camels were mostly classified correctly. There were no systematic differences between cattle and camels. In cattle and camels, ingestive mastication was less regular than rumination, indicated by significantly higher standard deviations of chewing peak intervals, peak heights, and peak breadths in intraindividual comparisons. The average standard deviations of these measures were lower in horses than in cattle and camel ingestive mastication, indicating a more consistent chewing pattern in horses. Horse valueswere similar to those of rumination mastication, suggesting equally regular chewing motions. Regular, rhythmic chewing represents a common feature of horses and functional ruminants, but the less uniform ingestive mastication in functional ruminants represents a deviating pattern, the adaptive value of which remains unclear. In particular, it does not appear to promote a higher ingestion rate. A potential cause may be the avoidance of high tooth wear rates by delaying a more regular, systematic mastication until ingesta has been softened and the grit has been washed off in the forestomach.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinary Clinic > Department of Small Animals
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
630 Agriculture
Language:English
Date:2017
Deposited On:29 Aug 2017 16:11
Last Modified:29 Aug 2017 16:11
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:2471-5646
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1002/jez.2075

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