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Haematological and serum biochemical characteristics of weaner pigs fed graded levels of Bambara groundnut offal

U Okah
SA Ehuriah


A 56 day study was conducted using 12 crossbred weaner pigs of average weight 10.67kg to determine the effects of different levels of raw bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranea) offal on the haematology and serum chemistry of the pigs. The 12 animals were divided into four groups of 3 each, and randomly assigned to four treatments in a completely randomized design (CRD). The pigs were housed in individual pens, with each animal representing a replicate. The raw BGO was included in the diets at 0, 10, 20 and 30% levels. Feed and water were offered ad-libitum. Blood was collected from the ear lobe of each animal at the end of the study period. The parameters measured were haemaglobin (Hb), packed cell volume (PCV), white blood cell (WBC), red blood cell (RBC), neutrophils, lymphocyte, monocyte and eosinophil and serum chemistry, which included, glucose, urea, creatinine, total bilirubin, conjugated bilirubin, total protein, aspartate amino transferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT). The results showed that the red blood cell (RBC~106ƒÊl), haemoglobin (Hb), packed cell volume (PCV %), white blood cell (WBC~103ƒÊl), neutrophils (%) and lymphocytes (%) differed (P<0.05) significantly among the  treatment diets. The values were, red blood cell 4.75, 4.55, 3.80 and 4.70 x106ƒÊl, haemoglobin 12.70, 10.10, 9.25, and 10.05 g/dl, packed cell volume 37.00, 30.50, 28.00 and 30.50 %, white blood cell 10.20, 15.95, 14.00 and 19.90 x103ƒÊl, neutrophils 43.00, 35.00, 36.00 and 24.50% and lymphocytes 52.50, 62.00, 60.50 and 62.00 % for diets 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively. Glucose, urea (mg/dl) and total protein (g/dl) differed (P<0.05) significantly among the treatment means. The values were, glucose 18.30, 14.60, 10.05 and 11.00 mg/dl, urea 62.35, 42.25, 45.30 and 52.40 mg/dl and total protein 6.00, 8.70, 6.65 and 5.00 g/dl) for diets 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively. However, monocyte, eosinophil, creatinine, total bilirubin, conjugated bilirubin, aspartate aminotranferase and alanine aminotransferase did not differ (P>0.05)  significantly among the treatment means. The result indicated that raw bambara groundnut offal can be incorporated into diet for weaner pigs at 30% level of inclusion without adverse effect on the physiological welfare of the animals.

Keywords: Feeding, bambara groundnut, offal, weaner, pigs and haematology