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Livestock, more prominent of which are ruminants, has a significant contribution to methane emission, a potential greenhouse gas as a good portion of their ingested energy is wasted in the form of methane (2–15%) and major of the ingested nitrogen as ammonia (75–95%). Microbial fermentation in ruminants results in loss of energy in methanogenesis and protein by ammonia nitrogen excretion which causes decreased animal optimal production and also act as environmental pollutants. Previously antibiotics were used to decrease these losses in the rumen, but this approach was restricted due to presence of antibiotic residues in animal products. Some plants or their bioactive extracts/metabolites such as organo-sulphur compounds, saponins, essential oils, flavonoids, tannins, and many other metabolites at higher concentration exhibited the potential to limit the methanogenesis by altering the rumen microflora. To overcome this problem, plant extracts including clove bud oil (Syzygiumaromaticum) was introduced as an alternative for manipulating rumen fermentation. Clove bud oil possesses the capability to interact with bacterial cells and inhibits the growth multiplication of methanogenic and deaminating bacteria. This results in reduction in ammonia nitrogen, methane and acetate concentration, while higher propionate and butyrate concentrations were noted. Eugenol is one of the bioactive constituents of clove which has the ability to manipulate rumen fermentation by increasing propionate production, decreasing acetate and methane production, and altering pattern of proteolysis, peptidolysis and amino acid deamination in the rumen. Current review will focus on the use of clove for manipulation of rumen fermentation for inhibition of methanogenesis and energy loss in ammonia – nitrogen waste.
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