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SILEGENEQUA
Efficient utilisation of forage maize by dairy cattle: Key plant parameters, genetic determinism, impact on milk production, Animal Behaviour and Environment

Forage maize is a pillar component of ruminant diets. It is particularly important in dairy cattle where, due to its high energetic value, maize silage has a unique ability to provide sufficient energy to sustain milk production, and it increases the efficiency of milk production by improving milk yield and quality. This project will contribute to the development of understanding the interaction between the plant parameters and their 'interactions' with animals.

Objectives
In order to maximize the chances of success in the breeding of maize for improved forage use efficiency, a better understanding of the plant parameters involved and of their interactions with the animal needs to be developed.
This general objective can be split into sub-objectives as follows:
1) identification of the key plant parameters involved in maize forage use efficiency, and the understanding of their relationships
2) unravelling of the genetic determinism of these key plant parameters, and of their potential genetic inter-relationships
3) assessment of the impact of altering these characteristics, through changes in allele composition at some of their major explanatory loci, on milk production, feeding behaviour, animal welfare and the environment.

Classified in FOOD, ANIMALS, CEREALS, NON-FOOD PRODUCTS

Scientist responsible for the project

Mr BENEDIKT TIMMERMAN
12, Chemin de l'Hobit Box 27
31790 Saint-Sauveur
France - FR

Phone: +33 5 62 79 98 66
Fax: +33 5 62 79 99 96
E-mail: benedikt.timmerman@seeds.novartis.com

References

Project ID QLRT-2000-01262
Organisation NOVARTIS SEEDS S.A.S.
Area 5.1.1
Start date 01 June 2001
Duration (months) 48
Total cost 2 878 868 €
Total EC contribution   1 815 837 €
Status Ongoing

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