Animal Science Department


Date of this Version



2014 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report, UNL Extension MP99, pp. 99-100.


Copyright © 2014 University of Nebraska.


This ongoing study investigates the impact of diet and bacteriophage activity on the structuring of rumen microbial community composition and diversity. Fistulated cattle were acclimated to a given diet for 21 days before samples were collected and subsequently enriched for viral particles with tangential flow filtration. Taxonomic identification, abundance, and functional attributes were assigned to both bacterial and viral communities. Principle coordinate analysis of the bacterial communities revealed significant clustering based on diet. While diet drives the structuring of rumen bacterial communities, bacteriophages may maintain high, constant bacterial diversity.