Research Article
Evaluation of the Nutritive Value of Quality Protein Maize on the Growth Performance and Carcass Characteristics of Weaner Rabbits

J.J. Omage, O.C.P. Agubosi, G.S. Bawa and P.A. Onimisi

Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 2009, 8(2), 106-111.

Abstract

Quality protein maize (QPM) was used to substitute normal maize variety in intensive rabbit study in attempt to reduce the cost of production. Thirty-six weaner rabbits with age ranging between 6-8 weeks and weighing between 225-300g were assigned to six treatment groups in a completely randomized design; six rabbits per treatment were individually caged and fed. The ration involved a percent replacement of normal maize with Quality protein maize at 0, 25, 50, 75, 100 % levels of inclusion across the treatments. The control diet involves a 0% level of QPM supplemented with synthetic lysine. Water and feed was provided ad-libitum throughout the study period of 56 days. Feed intake, water consumption, weight gain and mortality were recorded. Results showed no significant difference (P > 0.05) in total feed intake, weight gain, feed efficiency, water consumption, mortality rate, feed cost/kg weight gain. However, there was significant difference (P < 0.001) in feed cost/kg feed across the treatments. Carcass characteristics showed significant difference (P < 0.05) with no established trends in live weight, length of small and large intestines, liver, legs and tail. There was no significant difference (P > 0.05) in carcass weight, dressing percentage, heart, shoulder, loin, thigh, lungs, kidneys, spleen and head. The results indicated that feeding QPM to rabbits without lysine supplementation could sustain rabbits without affecting their performance, health and reduced cost of production.

ASCI-ID: 100-762

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