Occurrence of mycotoxigenic fungi in poultry feeds at live-bird markets, Zaria, Nigeria
Contamination of poultry feeds with mycotoxin-producing fungi such as Aspergillus spp is a major threat to animal and human food. This study was conducted to determine the occurrence of aflatoxigenic strain of fungi in feeds, fed to birds in live-bird markets. Feed samples were collected from feeding troughs and feeder in cages of birds and were inoculated on Sabouraud dextrose agar and Czypeck dox agar. Of 300 feed samples, 283 yielded various fungal growth belonging to seven genera, four of them known to be mycotoxigenic. Aspergillus, Rhizopus, Mucor, Dermatophyte, Yeast, Fusarium and Penicillium, whose isolation frequencies were 78%, 6%, 5.67%, 2%, 2%, 0.33% and 0.33% respectively. The aflatoxin producing Aspergillus spp isolated were A. flavus, A. parasiticus and A. nomius 126 (42%), 27 (9%) and 3(1%) respectively. In conclusion A. flavus was the most frequently isolated, and it is a known aflatoxin producer. It is recommended that mycotoxin binders should be added to poultry feed to mitigate the effect of aflatoxin contamination of feed in live-bird market.
Keywords: Aflatoxin, Aspergillus species, Feed, Live bird markets, Mycotoxin