Influence of Feeding Pooled Colostrum or Colostrum Replacement on IgG Levels and Evaluation of Animal Plasma as a Milk Replacer Protein Source
Newborn Holstein (n = 48) and Jersey (n = 30) calves were studied to compare the absorption of immunoglobulin G (IgG) from maternal colostrum (n = 39) or a colostrum replacement product derived from bovine serum (n = 39). Calves were also fed milk replacer with (n = 38) or without (n = 40) animal plasma to 29 d of age to determine the effect of plasma protein on IgG status, health, and growth. Colostrum or colostrum replacement was fed at 1.05 and 13.5 h of age and provided a total of 250, 180, 249, or 186 g IgG for Holsteins and Jerseys fed replacement or colostrum, respectively. Milk replacer (12.5% DM) was fed at 31% of metabolic birth weight (2 feedings/d). Jugular blood was sampled at 0 h, 24 h, and weekly to determine plasma IgG. At blood collection calves were weighed and measured to determine growth. Health scores, fecal scores, and grain intake were measured daily. Mean plasma IgG at 24 h did not differ between calves fed colostrum (13.78 Â± 0.39 g/L) and replacement (13.96 Â± 0.38 g/L). Average daily gain, wither height, hip height, body length, heart girth, health, and incidence of diarrhea were not different between treatment groups. Plasma IgG and performance were not affected by addition of animal plasma to milk replacer. The colostrum substitute successfully replaced colostrum as the source of IgG for newborn calves. Animal plasma was an acceptable source of protein, but did not enhance growth or immunity.