Performance, haematological and serum characteristics of broiler chicks fed diets with graded levels of rice offal
Akpet SO, Ibekwe HA
The study determined the performance, haematology and serum characteristics of broiler chicks fed graded levels of rice offal diets during an eight (8) week period. One hundred and fifty (150) day-old broiler chicks of Fedan strain were randomly assigned to five treatments of 30 birds each with 10 birds per replicate. The diets were isocaloric and isonitrogeneous. The result obtained showed that there was no significance (p> 0.05) different among treatment means in final live weight, body weight gain, weekly live weight, feed cost, and weekly feed conversion ratio (FCR) of both the started and finisher phases. There were also no significant (p> 0.05) differences in average weekly feed intake and daily weight gain in the finisher phase, but there were significant (p<0.05) differences in daily feed intake and weekly weight gain in the starter and finisher phases of the birds. The haematological values such as white blood cell (WBC), Haemoglobin concentration (Hb), red blood cell (RBC) and lymphocytes were significantly (p<0.05) different. All values for blood chemistry fell within normal ranges, indicating that the rice offal inclusion had no harmful effect on the health of the birds. It is concluded that up to 20% of rice offal could be included in broiler diets to reduce cost of feed.