Fungal biodegradation of plantain peel for broiler finisher feeding: In vitro digestibility, effects on performance, haematological and serum parameters
The objective of this study was to investigate the changes in in-vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD) of plantain peel (PPL) after its biodegradation with Aspergillus niger and also to determine the effect of degraded PPL on the performance, nutrient digestibility, weights of internal organs , haematological and serum biochemical parameters of broiler finishers. A total of 165 unsexed broiler finishers that were 4 weeks old were used. Aspergillus niger was used for the biodegradation of PPL. There were five dietary treatments of 33 birds each. There were 0 % inclusion level of PPL (control), 7% inclusion level of undegraded PPL (UPPL) then 3, 5 and 7% inclusion levels of degraded PPL (DPPL). Completely Randomized Design (CRD) was adopted. Weight gain was significantly (P<0.05) higher with the birds fed degraded PPL. The highest value (46.39 gramme /bird) was found in treatment 5 (7% DPPL) and the lowest value (38.05 gramme /bird) was found in treatment 2 (7% UPPL). Feed conversion ratio (P<0.05) was best (2.22) in birds placed on 7% DPPL and this is comparable to those on 0%PPL, 3%DPPL and 5%DPPL.There were significant (P<0.05) differences in the digestibility of dry matter, crude protein and crude fibre. Crop, gizzard and abdominal fat were significantly (P<0.05) affected. The values of packed cell volume (PCV), mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH), mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (MCHC) total protein, cholesterol and glucose were significantly (P<0.05) affected by the treatments. Fungal biodegradation of PPL using A.niger has the potential of enhancing feed intake, nutrient digestibility and the body weight gain of broiler finisher.
Keywords: Aspergillus niger, biodegradation, nutrient enhancement and broilers.