Azolla (Azolla pinnata X Anabaena azollae)

Local Name: Azolla

Azolla  is  a  floating  fern  mostly  utilized  as  bio- fertilizer for wetland paddy. It belongs to the family of Azollaceae. The fern Azolla, hosts a symbiotic blue green algae Anabaena azollae, which is responsible for the fixation and assimilation of atmospheric nitrogen. Azolla was found to be a very nutritive and cheap organic feed substitute for dairy cattle.

Nutritive Value

Azolla is rich in protein, almost 20-25% CP on dry weight basis. It is also found to contain essential minerals like Iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper,  manganese  etc.  apart  from   appreciable quantities of vitamin A and vitamin B12. It is also found to contain almost all the essential amino acids, many probiotics, bio-polymers and beta carotene.


The above mentioned  bio-chemical  constitution  along  with  the  rapid  multiplication  rate makes azolla an ideal organic feed substitute for livestock. Livestock can easily digest azolla due to  its high  protein  content and low  lignin  content. Fresh azolla can be mixed  with commercial feed in the ratio 1:1 or given directly to livestock. It was found that the milk production in cattle increased by 10-12% when they were fed with azolla. It is also found that azolla feeding improve the quality of milk.