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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2021

A meta-analysis of faecal output and nutrient composition, and potential methane emission from manure of dairy cows

Huhtanen, Pekka; Krizsan, Sophie Julie; Ramin, Mohammad


A meta-analysis was conducted to predict potential methane emission from manure in dairy cows. Biogas production from manure offers considerable environmental benefits and renewable energy is produced. The developed models predicted faecal concentrations of potentially digestible neutral detergent fibre, neutral detergent solubles and crude protein with adjusted root mean square errors of 15.4, 12.9 and 5.0 g/kg dry matter, respectively. Average model predicted potential methane production (adjusted root mean square error) of 1040 (53.9) g/d per cow, 51.9 (2.5) g/kg dry matter intake and 203 (3.2) g/kg faecal organic matter (volatile solids). Potential methane production from dairy cow manure can be predicted from diet and animal characteristics. Potential methane production is positively related to diet digestibility and daily feed intake. Determination of indigestible neutral detergent fibre concentration by a long ruminal in situ incubation is a useful tool in predictions of potential methane production in dairy cow manure.


Manure methane; Fermentable substrates; Digestible fiber

Published in

Animal Feed Science and Technology
2021, volume: 282, article number: 115120

Authors' information

Natural Resources Institute Finland (LUKE)
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG7 Affordable and clean energy

UKÄ Subject classification

Animal and Dairy Science

Publication Identifiers


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