Laying performance and digestibility of nutrients by Japanese quails fed diets containing peeled and cooked sweet potato meal
A six–month feeding trial was carried out to investigate the effect of feeding peeled cooked sundried sweet potato tuber on hen-day egg production and digestibility of nutrients by Japanese quails. Five isonitrogenous (20%CP) diets were compounded. The control diet (A) had zero sweet potato tuber meal. In the other four diets, 25, 50, 75 and 100% of maize (respectively) was replaced by peeled cooked sundried sweet potato tuber meal. 300 point-oflay female Japanese quails were randomly assigned the diets in a completely randomized design with feed and water provided ad libitum. Each diet was allocated to 60 quail chicks which were further divided into three replicates of 20 birds each. Feed intake, body weight change, age at first eggs, age at 50% egg production, age at 75% egg production, hen-day egg production, hen-housed egg production and feed per dozen eggs were similar (p? 0.05) across the diets. Water intake was significantly (p? 0.05) or (p > 0.05) higher by birds on diet D (51.93ml/bird/day) than by those on diets A (42.60) and C (46.68ml/bird/day). Water intake by birds on diet A was significantly (p? 0.05) lower than by birds on the sweet potato diets. Dry matter digestibility was significantly (p? 0.05) better on diet C (70.54%) than on diets B (68.44) and D (68.54%). Ether extract digestibility was significantly (p? 0.05) better on diet E (67.60%) than on diets A (54.57), B (54.60), C (49.70) and D (51.42%). Crude protein digestibility was not affected by the diets. It can be concluded that peeled cooked sundried sweet potato can completely replace maize in the diet of laying quails without adverse effects on performance or on digestibility of nutrients.
Keywords: Feed intake, water intake, hen-day egg production, hen-housed egg production, digestibility