Best Answer

Sheep, like other ruminants, have a stomach with 4 compartments. These are the rumen, reticulum, omasum, and abomasum. The rumen is the largest of the four and is essentially a big fermentation vat (30-50 gallons in a cow, smaller in a ewe). It is where a bolus of food goes first after being swallowed, and it contains millions of microorganisms that are capable of turning the cellulose in forage into volatile fatty acids (VFA's) that are absorbed from the rumen and converted into energy. This fermentation process is the reason that ruminants can live on a grass diet. The reticulum is sometimes referred to as the 'pace-setter'. It is located in the cranio-ventral (lower front) aspect of the rumen, and is a small muscular pouch that contracts periodically to cause regurgitation of a food bolus. When ruminants are at rest, they will regurgitate these boluses, chew on them for a while, and swallow them back down. This is what people are talking about when they say that a ewe or cow is 'chewing her cud'. The omasum is a ball-like structure (about the size of a volleyball in cows, Baseball in ewes) that is filled with layer-upon-layer of absorbent leaves of tissue. Some people refer to the omasum as the 'many-plies' or the 'butcher's bible' because when you see one in cross-section it looks like pages of a book all stacked-up next to one another. This structure results in a very large amount of surface area, which helps the omasum do its job of absorbing water. The abomasum is the final compartment that food travels through before it gets emptied into the small intestine. The abomasum is most similar in structure and function to the stomach of monogastric animals - like pigs or humans. Some final break-down of proteins and carbohydrates occurs here to enhance absorption in the small intestine. Sheep and goats do an exceptional job of absorbing water in their large intestines, resulting in the production of pelleted feces. Cows are not nearly as efficient at this, and consequently they make a bigger mess!

2011-09-12 23:56:03
This answer is:
User Avatar

Your Answer


Related Questions

Who are relatives?

People you are biologically related to in some way, most likely directly biologically related to.

What is one way that the jumano adapted to their environment?

what is one way the Jumano adapted to their environment

How are lungs adapted to their jobs?

they are not adapted in ant way lee Matt

What are adaptations for birds?

Each species of bird has their own adaptations. All birds share one adaptation, their beak. Each beak has been adapted to assist each bird in its way of feeding.

How are some leeches adapted to a parasitic lifestyle?

They are adapted by the way they are structured and the way they are shaped like a worm and the teeth they have

What is microbial adaptation?

It is a way in which certain micro organisms biologically adapt to the environment.

What is the best way to spell sheep plural?

It's sheep; same as for one of them.

How do elephant go to the toilet?

Biologically? The same way you do.Physically? They won't fit in the toilet.

What way is sheep to stop pipe sweating?

Sheep can not do much work with pipes at all.

Give one way in which you think an Ankylosaurus was adapted to its habitat?

He was adapted to its habitat because it can camoufalge

What is the difference between sheep and mutton?

Sheep is the live animal. Mutton is meat from a dead sheep. A sheep produces mutton the same way a pig produces pork.

Is sheep a concrete or collective noun?

The noun 'sheep' is a concrete noun, a word for a type of animal, a word for a physical thing.A collective noun is a noun used to group people or things in a descriptive way.The collective nouns for sheep are:a flock of sheepa band of sheepa mob of sheepa drift of sheepa down of sheepa drove of sheepa fold of sheepa trip of sheepa hurtle of sheepa herd of sheep

How is a green plant's way of feeding different from an animal's way of feeding?

animals depends on other animal while plants depends on it self

How are platypuses adapted to rock climbing?

Platypuses do not climb rocks. They are not adapted for rock climbing in any way.

How is the swallow adapted for flying very quickly?

one way in which the swallow is adapted for flying very quickly?

What are the feeding adaptations of angiosperm plants?

angiosperms are the most diverse and adapted types of plants because of the way they reproduce. The angiosperm is a flowering plant which uses animals and insects to spread its pollen to other plants. hope that helped C:

How is a green plants way of feeding different from an animals way of feeding?

green plants feed without movement while animals feed with movement

Why are black sheep and white sheep kept apart?

Well, in the world of sheep, no civil rights activists have surfaced. Until a certain sheep decides to do something about the way they're treated, black and white sheep will be segregated for eternity.

What do you do when a sheep shows up out of no where on a cow farm?

Call your neighbors. Some Shepard nearby had a sheep get a way.

How do you mark sheep?

The primary way to mark sheep is by ear tagging them. The other way is to use livestock markers that usually come in 4 colors. And they can also be collared and labeled that way.

Feeding methods of sponges?

Sponges are sessile organisms during their adulthood, meaning they do not move. To feed, sponges have adapted a process known as "filter-feeding." Basically, small particles of food passing by in the water are taken in by the sponge and digested directly in the sponge's cell layers. The larvae also feed this way, although they are not sessile and are free swimming.

Which appendage does the shrimp use for feeding?

Shrimp's way of feeding is almost the same as the lobster's way of eating. It has two very tiny claws that it uses for eating.

Adaptations in the chaparral?

One way in which the chaparral fauna have adapted is by requiring little water. They have adapted to being nocturnal creatures and have adapted to living conditions that are hot and dry.

How has the Bengal tiger adapted to it environment?

The right way!

What are all the different types of female sheep?

There are many different breeds of sheep, the best way to show you is to give you this link which lists the sheep breeds in alphabetical order.