Isolation of Lactobacillus species from fermented Parkia biglobosa seed and screening for their probiotic activity

K. Kuti1, I.M. Hussaini1*, A. Usman2, A. Isa1

1Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Life Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria
2Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science, Kaduna State University, Kaduna, Nigeria

(Manuscript received 24 December 2020; accepted for publication 10 May 2021)

Abstract. Food fermentation has been a tradition for decades due to its immense benefits. Lactic acid bacteria are known to possess probiotic potential due to various chemical antimicrobial substances they produce. This research was aimed at isolating Lactobacillus spp. from locally fermented locust beans and screening the isolates for their probiotic potential. A total of 20 samples of fermented locust beans (P. biglobosa) were collected and processed. The samples were inoculated onto de-Mann Rogosa Sharpe (MRS) media and incubated anaerobically. The isolates with characteristic colonial morphology of Lactobacillus sp. were characterized using Gram staining and biochemical tests. Lactobacillus spp. isolates were screened in-vitro for probiotic potential using the following parameters, tolerance of low pH, bile tolerance and antimicrobial activity. Four isolates of Lactobacillus species consisting of Lactobacillus fermentum and Lactobacillus plantarum were isolated from different fermented locust beans. All isolates showed tolerance to low pH and bile concentration of 3.04 and 0.3%, respectively. The Lactobacillus species isolates showed varying antibacterial activity against all test bacteria with isolate S06 (L. plantarum) showing the highest degree of antibacterial activity. In conclusion, the Lactobacillus species isolated from fermented locust beans can serve as probiotic candidate.


Assessing resource utilisation in beef cattle feedlot system in Adamawa State, Nigeria

M.R. Ja’afar-Furo1*, M.Y. Hamid1, A.Y. Thlaffa1, A. Sulaiman2

1Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, Faculty of Agriculture, Adamawa State University, PMB 25, Mubi, Nigeria
2Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, School of Agriculture and Agricultural Technology, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, Nigeria

(Manuscript received 20 July 2020; accepted for publication 24 March 2021)

Abstract. This study assessed resource utilisation in beef cattle fattening units in Adamawa State, Nigeria, with the intent of highlighting some crucial areas that may require policy intervention for improvement. Purposive, multistage and random sampling methods were employed in selection of 270 beef cattle fatteners in the area studied. Structured questionnaire and group discussion were used in sourcing for data. The latter were analysed through descriptive statistics and efficiency methods of Data Enveloping Analysis (DEA). Results indicated that Sokoto gudali (72.60%) and Rahaji (20.00%) were the major cattle breeds adopted for fattening. While a total of 70.70% of fatteners fed bulls for a period of 4-6 months and in the open without shade (77.80%), the use of combination of crop residues and conventional feeds was the most popular (74.81%) in feeding stock in the State. Further, the most important resources were initial cost of bulls and cost of feeds with N169,056.00 and N10,559.00 per bull, respectively. Resources were found to be efficiently utilised within the beef cattle feedlot farms with Constant Return to Scale (CRS), Non-Increasing Return to Scale (NIRTS), Variable Return to Scale (VRS), Scale Efficiency (SE) and Return to Scale RTS) models mean scores of 84.44%, 84.44%, 91.48%, 84.74%, and 100%, respectively. Conclusively, it could be stated that indigenous breeds of Sokoto gudali and Rahaji were the main bulls used for fattening in the State, and a mixture of crop residues and conventional feeds was the popular plane of feeding stock, with most farms utilising resources efficiently. Stemming from the findings, soft credit facilities to accord fatteners afford initial off-setting cost of bulls and frequent extension services to same, for modernisation of beef cattle feedlot system are highly recommended.

Estimation of the economic efficiency of Lacaune sheep farms, based on theoretical bio-economic models

S. Slavova*

Agricultural Institute, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 24 November 2020; accepted for publication 26 April 2021)

Abstract. The aim of the present study was to develop theoretical bio-economic models of Lacaune sheep farms and establish their economic efficiency. Based on three main criteria, 15 options were considered and analyzed. Data were processed using the program EWSH2 as a part of ECOWEIGHT Package for calculating economic weights in livestock. Revenues from sales, variable costs, gross margin and profitability before and after subsidies and per ewe were calculated. It was found that raising sheep of the high productive Lacaune breed could generate profit and provide profitability for the studied models of farms, regardless of the level of selection, type of production system, flock size and even the amount of subsidies. Nucleus farms reported the largest gross margin, followed by the basic and commercial farms. Profitability without subsidies showed the highest values for the nucleus flocks of 1000 ewes – 24.24% when adopting semi-intensive production system and 23.14% for the intensive one. With the addition of subsidies, nucleus and basic farms of 1000 ewes were considered the most profitable with 40% and 37.37%, as for both options the semi-intensive conditions were preferable. A tendency for the values of the studied indicators to grow with the increase in the number of ewes in the flocks was observed, as only for the variable costs it was reversed. Due to the lack of studies on economic efficiency of Lacaune sheep farms in Bulgaria, an additional detailed research, based on real data, is advisable to be conducted.


Plant-parasitic nematodes associated with Moringa tree (Moringa oleifera Lam.) in Adamawa, North Eastern Nigeria

M.Y. Jada, M.Y. Adamu, M.B. Aji, G. Abdullahi*

Department of Crop Protection, Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola, Adamawa State, Nigeria

(Manuscript received 5 July 2020; accepted for publication 5 April 2021)

Abstract. Moringa (Moringa oleifera Lam.) is becoming an economically important crop because of its nutritional value, therefore, more land area is currently being devoted to its cultivation particularly by vegetable farmers. But right now, little is known about plant-parasitic nematodes as one of its probable pest problems. A survey was, therefore, carried out to determine the plant-parasitic nematodes (PPN) associated with Moringa tree in Adamawa State, Nigeria. Nine of the 21 local government areas (LGAs) of the state were randomly selected; and 10 moringa farms, indicating at least two household/home gardens, were picked from each of the selected local government area for the survey of PPN. In each selected sampling site, soil samples were taken from the base of randomly selected moringa plants to a depth of 15-25 cm using hand trowel and hoe. Composite sample from each LGA from root and soils were taken to Laboratory for nematode extraction. Nematodes were extracted from both soil and roots using Baermann Tray method. The Moringa tree root rhizosphere revealed the presence of 14 genera of plant-parasitic nematodes with specimens from Meloidogyne, Scutellonema, Aphelenchoides, and Hoplolaimus genera being more abundant and frequent. They recorded average prominence value of 123.96, 93.31, 63.83 and 61.83, respectively. Whereas in the roots, Meloidogyne and Scutellonema specimens were found more than the remaining plant-parasitic nematodes genera with an average prominence value of 50.92 and 22.26, respectively.

Effect of irrigation rate on Sudan grass yield, grown as a second crop

R. Bazitov*

Agricultural Institute, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 24 October 2020; accepted for publication 12 May 2021)

Abstract. The aim of the present study was to establish the effect of irrigation rate on the yield of Sudan grass variety Engje-1, grown as a second crop for silage on meadow-cinnamon soil for the region of Southern Bulgaria. For this purpose, an experiment with Sudan grass variety Endje-1 on the experimental field of the Agricultural Institute – Stara Zagora, after its predecessor barley, was conducted. The Sudan grass was harvested in the brooming stage. Five variants were explored: Variant 1 – without irrigation (control); Variant 2 – with optimal irrigation, 75-80% of field capacity (FC); Variant 3 – irrigation as Var.2 but with removal of the first watering; Variant 4 – irrigation as Var.2 but with removal of the second watering; Variant 5 – irrigation as Var.2, but with removal of the third watering. It was found that the efficiency of 1m3 of irrigation water was the highest at the optimum variant (Var.2), where 5.36 kg of dry mass (DM) were produced by 1 m3 of water. With the removal of the second irrigation (Var.4), the yield on the dry mass decreased by 6.4% compared to the optimal variant (Var.2), and with the removal of the first irrigation (Var.3) the losses on the dry mass reached, 12.3%, respectively. The highest values of this indicator were obtained by varying the second irigation (Vаr.4) – 7.53 kgDM/m3 water. The coefficient of efficiency of the irrigation rate, representing the ratio between the increase of the yield (in comparison with the version without irrigation – Vаr.1), and the size of the realized irrigation norm had the highest value in the version without second irrigation (Vаr.4) and the lowest values for the version without first irrigation (Vаr.3).

Simulated acid rain impact on growth, yield and leaf anatomy of Dioscorea rotundata (L.)

E.P. Edosa*, J.F. Bamidele

Department of Plant Biology and Biotechnology, Faculty of Life Science, University of Benin, P.M.B. 1154, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria

(Manuscript received 23 September 2020; accepted for publication 26 March 2021)

Abstract. Acid rain causes damage to crops and also has adverse effect on the soil and the environment. These have led to the abandonment of farmlands in affected areas. Southern Nigeria which is known for yam cultivation is subjected to acid rain resulting from gas flaring activities, importation of fairly used vehicles, power generation and industrial activities. The growth, yield and leaf anatomy response of Dioscorea rotundata (L.) exposed to simulated acid rain (SAR) of pH 2.0, 3.0, 4.0 and 6.0 (control) was investigated. Acid rain exposure caused morphological changes in plants including chlorosis, necrosis, and leaf folding. Acidic precipitation inhibited vine length, leaf number, chlorophyll content index and leaf area at pH 2.0; while growth was encouraged at pH 6.0. 22% of leaf surface area of D. rotundata L, was injured after simulated acid rain treatment at pH 2.0 while necrosis was absent at the (control) pH 6.0. Harvest index of D. rotundata was not significantly different (p>0.05) between the pH treatment groups; however, was slightly higher at the (control) pH 6.0. Percentage dry matter partitioning of D. rotundata leaf and stem was not affected by the acid rain exposure; nevertheless, maximum percentage dry matter of tuber was obtained at pH 4.0 and pH 6.0. Transverse sections of D. rotundata leaves showed cuticle wax damage and rupture of epidermis at lower pH 2.0 and 3.0. Mesophyll degradation and cytoplasm depletion was also observed in the treated leaves. The plant leaves revealed dark tissues in necrotic areas which may be phenolic compounds secretion. However, it became clear that significant increases in the growth parameters considered occurred at pH 6.0 (control).

Optimizing the thickness of a straw outer wall of a building for sows in a view to achieving cost-effective heat insulation

V. Dimova*, D. Georgiev

Department of Agricultural Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 22 November 2020; accepted for publication 16 April 2021)

Abstract. The aim of the study is to determine the optimum thickness of the surrounding wall structure of a building for nursing sows by using heat insulation from straw and different fuel (pellets and dry wood) for heating the building. To achieve the purpose, 6 models of walls made of environmentally friendly panels with wooden skeleton, thermal insulation from pressed straw bales and double-sided clay plaster have been developed, such that the accepted thickness of the thermal insulation layer is respectively: 20, 25, 30, 35, 40 and 45 cm. The construction value of the finished wall is determined by adding the value of the construction and assembly works on the construction site to the value of the preparation of the panels (in a workshop), including the payment of labor, materials and additional costs for the implementation of clay plaster and waterproofing membrane. The annual energy losses through 1 m2 of the enclosing wall and the annual heat insulation costs (as a sum of annual energy cost and the depreciation deductions) are determined through the described methodology and verification of condensation of water vapor on the inner surface of the wall was carried out. The results of the research show that by using pellets for fuel, the optimal thickness of the thermal insulation is 45 cm, and by using dry wood it is 35, 40 and 45 cm. All studied models of enclosing straw wall meet the hygienic requirements for preventing condensation on their inner surfaces.

Effect of transport vehicles on the grain harvester idle time during harvesting

G. Tihanov*

Department of Agricultural Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 12 December 2020; accepted for publication 2 April 2021)

Abstract. The article studied the effect of transport vehicles on the grain harvester idle time during wheat, barley and rapeseed harvesting in 6 agricultural farms. In each of the farms one grain harvester and the established harvesting organization were studied without changing the unloading mode and the specific activities performed by the harvester operators and transportation vehicles. By multifactor regression analysis the effect of time for moving the transport vehicle on the grain harvester idle time was established. In addition, the value of the determination coefficient R2=0.54 reveals that 54% of the harvester idle time for unloading the grain hopper (Т1) change is due to the change of significant times and 46% to the effect of unmanageable factors. It has been established that the change in the time from opening the unloading auger to its activation depends on the position of transport vehicles on the field (t1) and the time for their movement to the harvester auger (t2). The results obtained can be used to minimize costs in the technological process of crop harvesting.

Evaluation of Clove (Eugenia caryophyllata) and Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) powders for common carp Cyprinus carpio L. anesthesia

Nasreen Mohi Alddin Abdulrahman1*, Khalidah Salim Al-Niaeem2, Amjed Kadem Resen2

1College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Sulaimani, Sulaimaniya, Iraq
2College of Agriculture, University of Basrah, Basrah, Iraq

(Manuscript received 29 April 2020; accepted for publication 26 May 2021)

Abstract. The anesthetic efficacy of two kinds of natural anesthetic Clove (Eugenia caryophyllatata) and Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) powders were evaluated on common carp (Cyprinus carpio L.) for handling and health management experiments. The concentrations of anesthetics were assessed by using two types of clove and tobacco anesthetics; each with three replicates for measuring induction times to anesthesia. Concentrations of 100, 200, 250, and 350 mg/l at the ratio 1:1 of the aqueous extract of both Clove (Eugenia caryophyllatata) and Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) to evaluate their effect on common carp anesthesia were used. The aqueous extract anesthetized fish partially in the high levels. No significant differences appeared on blood glucose, ALP, ALT and AST among different levels of the anesthesia concentrations used. As the anesthesia concentration increased, the Red blood cell (RBC) count and hemoglobin decreased.

Effects of liquid organic mineral complex (MultiMix®) on milk yield, composition and cheesemaking capacity of milk in dairy cows

T. Angelova1*, K. Nedelkov2, D. Yordanova1, V. Karabashev1, J. Krastanov1

1Agricultural Institute, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
2Department of Nutrition, dietetics and veterinary expertise of feed, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 26 October 2020; accepted for publication 22 April 2021)

Abstract. The objective of this experiment was to investigate the effects of liquid organic mineral complex (MultiMix®) on the milk yield, composition and cheesemaking capacity of milk in dairy cows. Thirty Holstein cows (8 primiparous and 22 multiparous) were used in a randomized complete block design experiment with 15 cows per treatment. Feeding was ad libitum targeting 5% refusals. Milk yield data and samples for fat, true protein, solids not fat (SNF), lactose content and parameters characterizing the milk’s coagulation properties were collected throughout the experiment. Data suggested that MultiMix® administered through the cows’ drinking water had a positive effect on the milk productivity with a high degree of significance (p<0.001). A positive effect on the indicators characterizing the quality composition of milk has also been observed (p<0.001). Additionally, the cheesemaking capacity of milk was enhanced by supplementing animal water with MultiMix® (p<0.001). Overall, the new liquid organic mineral complex used in the present experiment showed promising results for improvement of milk production and composition in dairy cows but further studies are needed to unveil the physiologic mechanisms underlying these beneficial effects.