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Ruminant Production


Improving the economic benefits and competitiveness of ruminant farms through technological innovation is at the centre of this programme’s research. It focuses on dairy and meat cattle management, nutrition and behaviour in order to reduce their environmental impact and ensure animal welfare and milk and meat quality. It also works on the development of new recombinant proteins that improve animal efficiency at a low cost, as well as on the isolation and identification of new probiotic/prebiotic agents to prevent uterine diseases and improve intestinal immunity and ruminal function.

Other research lines are the management and nutrition around weaning calves, reduction of antibiotic use, identification of new markers of animal nutritional and health status, and the temporal regulation of ruminant metabolism during stressful periods. In dairy cows, the programme is also working on precision feeding and the optimisation of the dry period. In beef, research is focused on the impact that transport can have on animal welfare and animal recovery, and on improving feeding strategies and water supply.


· Head: Maria Devant
· Researchers: 5
· Support staff: 4
· Work centres: IRTA Torre Marimon


Relevant scientific publications:


Bach, A., Terré, M., & Vidal, M. (2019). Symposium review: Decomposing efficiency of milk production and maximizing profit. Journal Of Dairy Science. doi:10.3168/jds.2019-17304

Maynou, G., Chester-Jones, H., Bach, A., & Terré, M. (2019). Feeding Pasteurized Waste Milk to Preweaned Dairy Calves Changes Fecal and Upper Respiratory Tract Microbiota. Frontiers In Veterinary Science, 6. doi:10.3389/fvets.2019.00159

Evaluation of potential biomarkers to determine adequate colostrum provision in male dairy-beef calves at arrival to the rearing facility beyond 14 days of age. 2023.

Simulation of feed restriction and fasting: Effects on animal recovery and gastrointestinal permeability in unweaned Angus-Holstein calves. 2022.

Drinking water chlorination in dairy beef fattening bulls: water quality, potential hazards, apparent total tract digestibility, and growth performance. 2022.

Sánchez, D.; Marti, S. (CA); Verdú, M.; González, J.; Font-i-Furnols, M.; Devant, M. (CA). (6/6). 2022. Characterization of Three Different Mediterranean Beef Fattening Systems: Performance, Behavior, and Carcass and Meat Quality. Animals. 12(15): 1960.

Roca-Pinilla R, Holani R, López-Cano A, Saubi C, Baltà-Foix R, Cobo ER, Garcia-Fruitós E, Arís A. Sci Rep. 2021 Dec 10;11(1):23798. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-03220-z.

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