AUTHOR : AZUBUIKE, CHINWENDU JUSTIN (PhD)
DEPARTMENT : ANIMAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
AFFILIATION : FEDERAL UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY OWERRI
Three experiments were conducted to evaluate the nutritive value of the mixture of fermented bovine blood and rumen digesta as feed ingredient in broiler and laying hens rations. Bovine blood and rumen digesta were mixed at a ratio of 1 : 3 in an air-tight plastic container and allowed to ferment for 4 days and milled into meal. In the first experiment, four (4) broiler starter were formulated at dietary levels of 0%, 2.5%, 5% and 7.5% respectively. Two hundred and eighty-eight (288) two-week old Hubbard broiler chicks were divided into four (4) groups of seventy-two (72) birds each and randomly assigned to the four (4) different treatment diets in a completely randomized design (CRD). Each treatment was further divided into three (3) replicates of twenty-four (24) birds. Feed intake increased with increasing dietary level of mixture of fermented, dried bovine blood and rumen digesta and became significantly higher (p<0.05) than the control of 5% declining slightly thereafter, possible due to the increasing dietary fibre. Body weight gain followed the same trend. Feed conversion ratio was similar for all treatment groups (p>0.05). Results from this study suggest that up to 7.5% inclusion level of the mixture of fermented dried bovine blood and rumen digesta could be tolerated by broiler starters without any deleterious effect. In the second experiment, a 35-day feeding trials involving three hundred (300) 5 week old broilers was carried out in a completely randomized design to evaluate the performance, organ characteristics, nutrient utilization and economic analysis of broiler finishers fed diets containing a mixture of fermented dried bovine blood and rumen digesta (FDBBRD) at dietary levels of 0, 5, 10, 15 and 20% respectively. At the end of the feeding trials, two birds were randomly selected from each treatment and transferred to a metabolism cage for faecal collection and determination of nutrient digestibility. Another set of five (5) bird birds were randomly selected from each treatment for carcass and organ weight evaluation. Feed intake of the groups on varying dietary levels of FBBRD were significantly (P<0.05) higher than the control (0%) group. Birds fed 10% FDBBRD diet performed better than those on the control diet in terms of body weight gain. Feed conversion ratio were similar (p>0.05) for all treatment groups. There were no significant difference (p>0.05) among the groups, in relative organ weight. The groups on the test materials (FDBBRD) also recorded better nutrient utilization values than the control group. The results suggest that up to 20% inclusion level of FDBBRD meal could be tolerated by broiler finisher without any adverse effects on the birds. The group on 10% FDBBRD diet performed better in terms of packed cell volume, haemoglobin and red blood cells. eosinophil values of birds on all the treatment groups except that of 5% FDBBRD diet were within the normal range. In the third experiment, a twelve (12) weeks feeding trial was conducted to evaluate the inclusion levels of a mixture of fermented bovine blood and rumen digesta as a feed ingredient in laying hen diets. Six (6) experimental diets were formulated at 0%, 5%, 10%, 15%, 20% and 25% dietary inclusion levels respectively. Two hundred and seventy (270) black leghorn laying hens 10 months already in lay, were assigned to six (6) treatment groups in a completely randomized design. Each treatment groups was further subdivided into three (3) replicates of fifteen (15) birds each. Feed intake, egg production and egg weight followed similar trend. Egg production tended to have an inverse effect on body weight gain. There were no significant differences (p>0.05) in all egg quality parameters assessed.
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