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Oxalate and tannins assessment in Atriplex halimus L. and A. nummularia LAbu-Zanat, M. M.; Al-Hassanat, F. M.; Alawi, M.; Ruyle, G. B. (Society for Range Management, 2003-07-01)The study was conducted at 3 locations in the arid region of Jordan to assess the seasonal changes of oxalate and tannins in Atriplex halimus L. and A. nummularia L. plants commonly used for revegetation of degraded rangelands. During spring and fall seasons, 20 shrubs of each species were selected randomly at each location, 20 similar twigs per shrub were clipped and analyzed for oxalate and tannins. Atriplex halimus contained higher levels of oxalate (7.00%) compared with A. nummularia plants (6.20%) (P < 0.001). Oxalate levels averaged 8.29 and 4.92% in spring and fall season, respectively. Plants of A. halimus accumulated more oxalate in spring than those of A. nummularia. Clipping had no effect on oxalate concentration. The seedlings of A. nummularia contained more oxalate than old plants whereas old shrubs of A. halimus contained more oxalate than the young seedlings. The browse of A. halimus contained more condensed and hydrolyzable tannins (1.05% and 0.67%, P < 0.0001) than A. nummularia (0.80% and 0.39%, P 0.0001), respectively. Clipping had no effect on the levels of tannic phenols, condensed and hydrolyzable tannins. Young plants of the 2 species had higher levels of condensed tannins compared to older plants. However, seedlings of A. nummularia contained significantly higher levels of condensed tannins compared to A. nummularia seedlings (1.57% and 1.47%, respectively). Atriplex halimus synthesized more oxalate, tannic phenols, condensed and hydrolyzable tannins than A. nummularia. These secondary metabolites may explain the low palatability of Atriplex halimus compared to A. nummularia.