Growth and Development of the Ruminant Gastro-Intestinal Tract. GI Tract development begins very early in gestation. Ruminant enters life as a simple stomached animal; forestomach (reticulorumen, omasum) is non-functioning at birth Only a few weeks are required for activation
(reticulorumen, omasum) is non-functioning at birth
required for activation
of the forestomach
development early in gestation.
loop at about 3 months of gestation.
lamina to create the papillae of the
ruminal surface which is detectable
by the 5th month of gestation.
rumen, reticulum and
omasum develop faster
than the abomasum.
rapidly, so that at birth
the abomasum is equal in
weight to the entire
At the Time of Birth
thin wall. Is non-functioning at birth.
functioning at birth.
Comprises about 70% of stomach capacity at birth.
continue to grow, with the rumen,
reticulum, omasum and small
intestines growing at the greatest
birth. Diet can have a large impact on development of the GI tract.
Figure is stomach of new born calf. Note size of abomasum relative to rumen.
Effect of Diet on Gastro-Intestinal Tract Development
or two of life.
reticulorumen with respect to body weight is complete
minerals and volatile fatty acids (VFA’s). Also protects the
underlying rumen mucosa tissue.
surface area for absorption of VFA’s.