Twelve Liuyang black goats were selected and divided into three groups in a randomized design and they were provided one of the three treatment diets with different chop lengths of ramie silage [1 cm (RS1), 2 cm (RS2), and 3 cm (RS3)]. The length had no effect on pH or the content of acetic acid, butyric acid, and valeric acid. In contrast, NH3–N decreased (P = 0.024) and the ratio of acetate to propionate (P = 0.083) and total volatile fatty acid (TVFA) content (P = 0.087) tended to decrease, and the proportion of propionic acid tended to increase (P = 0.096) with an increase in the chop length of ramie. The increasing lengths of ramie silage decreased the content of total essential amino acids (AA) (P = 0.001), total non-essential AA (P = 0.003), and total AA (P = 0.001), and decreased the concentration of aspartic acid (P = 0.076) in the ruminal fluid. Ramie silage affected xylanase activity (P = 0.043), with greater activity in RS1 than in RS2 and RS3. The recommended chop length of ramie silage is 1 cm because of increasing TVFA, amino acid concentration, and xylanase activity in the ruminal fluid of goats.
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