Summary: A method is described for the isolation in pure culture of the predominant cellulolytic bacteria which occur in the ovine rumen. Ten isolates of cocci were obtained from the rumen contents of one sheep conditioned to lucerne hay, and were identified as . All ten isolates degraded xylan in addition to cellulose and cellobiose and a comparative study of the end-products of fermentation of xylan and cellobiose was made. The rates of growth on cellulose and cellobiose were compared, and the role of these cocci in the breakdown of the fibrous part of the diet assessed.


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