Campylobacter bacteria are foodborne pathogens that can colonize the gut of food animals. Limited in their ability to ferment sugars, Campylobacter can derive energy for growth via amino acid catabolism. The objectives of the present studies were to test whether supplemental distillers grains containing high amounts of rumen-undegradable intake protein or supplemental lasalocid may, by promoting amino acid flow to the lower bovine gut, increase intestinal carriage of Campylobacter. In study one, 10 steers (5 per treatment) were adapted to diets formulated to achieve 0 or 30% dried distillers grains. After an initial 14-day adaptation to the basal diet, control and treated steers were fed their respective diets for 23 days, after which time they were fed supplemental lasalocid for an additional 8 days, followed by a 5-day withdrawal. In study two, 24 steers preacclimated to a basal diet were adapted via 3-day periodic increases to dietary treatments formulated to achieve 0, 30, or 60% wet corn distillers grains with solubles. Analysis of Campylobacter bacteria cultured from duodenal and fecal samples in study one and from fecal samples in study two revealed no effect of dried distillers grains or wet corn distillers grains with solubles on the prevalence or concentrations of duodenal or fecal Campylobacter. The results from study one indicated that colonized steers, regardless of treatment, harbored higher Campylobacter concentrations when transitioned to the basal diet than when coming off pasture. Campylobacter carriage was unaffected by lasalocid. These results provide no evidence that feeding distillers grains high in rumen-undegradable intake protein or supplemental lasalocid contributes to increased intestinal carriage of Campylobacter in fed cattle.

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Author notes

Present address: C220 Animal Science, University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583-0908, USA.

Present address: Departamento de Ciencias de la Vida, Universidad de las Fuerzas Armadas-ESPE, Sangolqui 171-5-2318, Ecuador.

§Present address: Global Animal Products, 3701 Airway Boulevard, Amarillo, TX 79118, USA.

||Present address: Zoetis, 333 Portage Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, USA.