Carcass Characteristics and Economics of Broiler Chickens Fed Different Levels of Grasshopper Meal in Place of Fish Meal
Seventy-two (72) Anak day old broiler chicks were used in an experiment to evaluate the effect of replacing fishmeal with grasshopper meal on the carcass characteristics and the economics of broiler chicken production. The chicks were divided into three experimental groups of 24 chicks and replicated 3 time with 8 birds per replicate. The groups were assigned to dietary treatment as follows: diet 1, 0% grasshopper meal, diet 2, 50% grasshopper and diet 3, 100% grasshopper all replacing fish meal. At the end of eight weeks, feeding, three chickens per group were slaughtered and fresh weights of carcass parts of dressed birds were measured and expressed as percentages of dressed carcasses. Body weight gain of birds increased significantly as the level of grasshopper meal increased (p<0.05). The consumption of grasshopper meal was significantly (p<0.05) lower than the control diet. The carcass measurements showed significant difference (p<0.05) in the treatment means, with the exception of the breast, pancreas, proventriculus, heart, spleen, liver, lungs, crop and chest. Birds fed diet 1 gave the highest revenue, followed by those on diet 3, while diet 2 birds gave the least value. The results suggest that grasshopper meal can completely replace 100% of fishmeal in broiler’s diet, without affecting their biological performance and economic returns.