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The n-alkane technique is accepted as an appropriate method to estimate herbage intake by grazing ruminants. This method reinforces issues similar to those raised by other methods based on markers such as the effect of carrier matrix or dosing method and frequency on the excretion kinetics of the dosed n-alkanes (Dove et al. 2002; Molina et al. 2004, Oliván et al. 2007). The time of dosage needed to reach the dynamical equilibrium between the concentrations of alkanes in the diet and in the faeces of ruminants is still unclear for the natural grassland environments. The aim of this study was to determine the appropriate timing of oral administration of alkane C32 to estimate herbage intake in beef heifers on natural grassland environments.

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Daily Faecal Excretion of Alkane C32 in Beef Cattle Females Grazing Natural Grasslands in Southern Brazil and in Uruguay

The n-alkane technique is accepted as an appropriate method to estimate herbage intake by grazing ruminants. This method reinforces issues similar to those raised by other methods based on markers such as the effect of carrier matrix or dosing method and frequency on the excretion kinetics of the dosed n-alkanes (Dove et al. 2002; Molina et al. 2004, Oliván et al. 2007). The time of dosage needed to reach the dynamical equilibrium between the concentrations of alkanes in the diet and in the faeces of ruminants is still unclear for the natural grassland environments. The aim of this study was to determine the appropriate timing of oral administration of alkane C32 to estimate herbage intake in beef heifers on natural grassland environments.