Growth performance and economics of production of cockerels fed graded levels of cassava (Manihot esculenta) grit basal diet
A sixteen week trial was conducted to assess the effects of replacing maize with cassava grit on growth performance and economics of production using 120 “Day old” Harco cockerel chickens. Four experimental cockerel starter and finisher diets were formulated. Diet 1 had 0% cassava grit (CG) while diet 2, 3 and 4 had maize replaced with cassava grit at 33.3, 66.6 and 100% replacement for maize. Chicks were randomly assigned to the four treatment diets in a completely randomized designed (CRD). Results on performance at starter phase revealed that average weekly weight gain and feed intake were significantly (P<0.05) highest among birds fed 33.3% CG. Feed conversion ratio was also significantly (P<0.05) influenced while at finisher the phase average live weight, weight gain and feed conversion ratio were significantly (P<0.05) higher among birds fed 33.3% CG compared to other levels of CG inclusion. Result on economics of production revealed that least cost of feed consume and cost of feed per kilogram weight gain at both phases were recorded among birds fed 100% CG. Income and net profit were highest among birds fed 33.3% CG. Therefore,
Cassava grit can replace maize up to 33.3% inclusion level for optimum performance and good cost returns.
Keywords: Cockerel, Cassava grit, Growth performance, economics of production, Diets