Ruminants are mammals that are able to acquire nutrients from plant-based food by fermenting it in a specialized stomach prior to digestion, principally through microbial actions. (from Wikipedia) Ruminant animals are designed to eat forages. They need energy, protein, by-pass protein, bypass oil and fibre for growing, reproduce, be healthy and lactation. The major ingredients in ruminant feed are grains, screenings, molasses for energy supply, oilseed meals, corn gluten meal, urea, alfalfa, brewers and distellers grain for protein supply, oilseed hulls, pulps, grain hulls for fibre supply, corn gluten meal, dried distillers grains. Conditioning of ruminant feed is very important. The optimum conditioning of feed ensures better starch gelatinization, better molasses absorption, softening of fibre, improved digestibility, reduced pellet mill power consumption, better pellet durability, minimum replacement spare parts.
Types of ruminant feeds are: