Development of techniques for the elucidation of plant-based diets of free-ranging herbivores using fluorescence spectroscopy

TitleDevelopment of techniques for the elucidation of plant-based diets of free-ranging herbivores using fluorescence spectroscopy
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2000
AuthorsRayson G.D., Danielson T.L., Anderson D.M., Estell R.E., Fredrickson E.L., Havstad K
Conference NameAnnual Meeting, Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies
Date Published2000
ARIS Log Number116303
Keywordsdietary intake, livestock, measurements, multi-dimensional fluorescence
AbstractThe determination of the dietary intake of domestic livestock is necessary for their effective management. This becomes more difficult when the animals are allowed to feed on native flora in open rangeland. Efforts in the past to provide information regarding a particular animal's dietary habits have used either highly invasive techniques or methods that are time eand labor intensive and very subjective. The development instrumentation to enable the interrogation of samples using multi-dimensional fluorescence measurements for rapid, objective identification of those plants eaten by a specific animal is the objective of the present study. Initial work has concentrated on the generation of a spectral database for each of six plants. These plants were selected because of their consumption by free-ranging sheep and cattle in the northern Chihuahuan Desert of the southwestern United States. The plants were collected from within the USDA AJornada Experimental Range in southern New Mexico. These plants include species of grasses (tobosa hay and mesa dropseed), forbs (spectacle pod and pale globemallow), and shrubs (tarbush and four-wing salt bush). The application of post-processing algorithms to these fluorescence emission spectra have also been pursued. Excitation of extract solutions from five plants of each species at 369 nm has yielded significant spectral signatures in the wavelength region of 400-600 nm.