SUMMARY: The concentrations of the various groups of micro-organisms in the rumens of sheep when feeding on a roughage diet to appetite or grazing a mixed pasture, changed with time in patterns very similar to those previously found in sheep fed restricted diets once daily. It is postulated that these patterns will be present wherever the daily eating behaviour of the animal includes a major fairly continuous period during which all or most of the ration is eaten, and long periods during which little or no feed is consumed.


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