Performance, rumen characteristics and blood profile of West African dwarf goats fed varying levels of yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae)
A study was carried out to evaluate the effect of inclusion of yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) on the performance, rumen characteristics and blood profile of West African dwarf (WAD) goats. Four (4) dietary treatments were prepared by adding 0 g, 0.5 g, 1.0 g and 1.5 g yeast to concentrate feed. Twelve (12) WAD goats with an average live weight of 10.17±0.53 kg were allocated to the four treatment lots in a completely randomised design
and used in a feeding trial that lasted 70 days. Concentrate was fed at 3% of body weight while Panicum maximum as the basal diet was ad libitum. Data were collected on nutrient intake, rumen fermentation and microbial ecology, blood profile and then analysed using one-way analysis of variance. Results showed that inclusion of yeast did not affect (P>0.05) nutrient intake, rumen fermentation of WAD goats. Bacteria and fungi population were also not affected (P>0.05) by the inclusion of yeast, however there was an increase (P<0.05) in protozoa from 0.73× 109 (control) to 1.33× 109 (1.0g yeast). Packed cell volume (PCV) of goats decreased (P<0.05) when goats were fed 1.5g yeast (20.93%) compared to control (24.37%). It can be concluded that addition of yeast to the diets of WAD goats did not affect their overall performance, increased population of rumen protozoa and reduced blood packed cell volume.