Lesions in Broiler Chicks Following Experimental Contamination with Battery Waste
The objective of the present study was to investigate the effect of feed contamination with battery waste on the performance, organs weights as well as the histology of some internal organs of broiler chicks. A total of 120 1- d old broiler chicks were allotted to four dietary treatments in a completely randomized design. The experiment lasted 21 days. The dietary treatments include a control diet with no battery waste (D1). Battery waste was included at 0.5%, 1.0% and 1.5%, in diets 2, 3, and 4, respectively. There were four treatments with three replicates per treatment of 10 birds per replicate. Data collected were used to evaluate feed intake, weight gain, and efficiency of feed utilization. The weights of liver, pancreas, kidney, heart, and lungs were also recorded and tissue samples of each collected for histological examination. Average daily food intake (ADFI), average daily gain (ADG), and feed conversion efficiency (FCE) were not influenced by the dietary treatments (P > 0.05). However, increasing the level of battery waste from 0.5% to 1.5% tended to increase ADFI. Weights of the kidney, liver, gizzard and heart were not influenced by the levels of contamination with battery waste (P > 0.05). Increasing the level of contamination from 0.5% to 1.5% resulted in numerical increases in the weights of the liver, and kidney. The weight of the spleen in chicks fed diets 1, 2, and 3 were similar and was significantly (P<0.05) lower than those fed diet 4. Histological results showed a range in the damage of the kidney and liver of chicks fed different level of inclusion of battery waste, this vary from mild to severe depending on the inclusion level. The kidney had mild to severe congestion of glomeruli and distention of the capillary vessels with numerous thrombi with increasing contamination with battery waste. The liver was characterized by marked coagulative necrosis and degeneration of the hepatocytes and was more pronounced in chicks fed diet 4. The structural alterations were attributed to intake of lead in diets contaminated with battery waste. It was concluded that contamination of feed for broilers chicks beyond 0.5% is detrimental to the performance of broiler chicks.