The reticulum is not physically separated from the rumen. Its main role is to act as a filter, trapping larger feed particles that require further digestion. These larger food particles are regurgitated and rechewed – a process called rumination – with more saliva. They are then swallowed into the rumen again. Small food particles go straight into the omasum.
Image: The reticulum is highlighted in pink. The arrows show the direction of the bolus. © DairyNZ.