Tropical Grasslands (1989) Volume 23, 193202
CONSEQUENCES FOR ANIMAL PRODUCTION OF CYANOGENESIS IN SORGHUM FORAGE AND HAY — A REVIEW
J.L. WHEELER and C. MULCAHY
CSIRO Division of Animal Production, Pastoral Research Laboratory, Armidale, N.S.W. 2350
Sorghum has several desirable attributes as a summer forage crop and interest in using it for hay is increasing. All sorghum forage has the potential to release hydrogen cyanide (HCNp) when eaten by ruminants. Factors affecting the HCNp are enumerated and the possible role of cyanogenesis in pest and disease resistance is briefly reviewed. Consequences discussed are frank poisoning and the factors affecting it, the effect of fear of poisoning on utilisation practice, reduced acceptability of the forage to animals, and the induction of sulfur deficiency. The advantages of routine supplementation with salt and sulfur are noted.