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Growth and haematological variables of broiler chicken fed varying levels of diatomaceous earth as growth promoter

Author: 
Adebiyi, O.A., Ologhobo, A.D and Ogunwole, O.A
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

In an experiment carried out to determine the effects of inclusion of different levels of diatomaceous earth (fossil shell flour) on growth and haematological variables of broiler birds was investigated. The experiment comprised 150 day-old Arbor Acre strain of broiler chicks were randomly alloted to five dietary treatments; control (T1) and four differents levels of inclusion of fossil flour 2% (T2), 3% (T3), 4% (T4) and 5% (T5). The control birds were fed normal diet. Each diet was replicated 3 times with 10 birds in each replicate in a completely randomised design. There were no significant (p>0.05) differences in the average feed intake, average weight gain and feed conversion ratio of all the birds on the different dietary treatments with values ranging from 1.04 to 1.26 kg/bird, 0.44 to 0.61 kg/bird and 2.04 to 2.33 kg/bird respectively. The result of the haematological parameters of the birds fed the experimental diets revealed that the various inclusion levels of fossil shell o significantly (P< 0.05) affected the levels of white blood cells, total protein, glucose, globulin and red blood cells of the birds while albumin, packed cell volume and haemoglobin count were not significantly affected (P>0.05). The glucose value increases as the level of fossil shell inclusion increases from 2% (123.00) to 5% (152.75); with birds on diet E (152.75) having the highest significantly value. Haematological indices suggest that the health status of the birds were not adversely affected by the various inclusion levels of fossil shell in their diets. Hence fossil shell could still replace maize in broiler diets up to 5% level; however efforts towards reducing the dustiness of fossil shell could promotes more of its benefits. This study could be extended to layers to know its effect on egg production.

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