Effect of molasses on performance, haematology and serum chemistry of broiler chickens
The effect of dietary inclusion of molasses on performance, haematology and blood chemistry of broiler chicks was investigated using 160 broiler chicks. The experiment was conducted for 9 weeks. The birds were fed diets containing various inclusion rates of molasses (0%, 5%, 10% and 15%) in a completely randomized design. Each treatment was replicated twice with twenty birds per replicate. Performance indices were measured weekly, while the mortality rate was calculated at the end of the study. At the end of the fifth week, 24 blood samples were collected (3 samples per replicate) and analysed for haematological indices: packed cell volume (PCV), haemoglobin concentration (Hb), red blood cells count (RBC) and white blood cells count (WBC). Sixteen blood samples were also collected (2 samples per replicate) and analysed for blood chemistry indices: total protein, albumin, alkaline phosphatase (ALP), urea, cholesterol, aspartate transaminase (AST) and alanine transaminase (ALT). There were no significant differences (p>0.05) in daily feed intake, daily weight gain, feed conversion ratio and mortality. There were also non-significant differences (p>0.05) in RBC, WBC, albumin, ALP, urea, cholesterol, AST and ALT values among the birds fed all the diets. Significant differences (p<0.05) were, however, observed for PCV and Hb among the diets. Apart from the WBC and total protein values, the Hb, RBC, PCV, albumin, ALP, urea, cholesterol, AST and ALT values were within the normal ranges for broiler chicks, except PCV of birds on 15% inclusion of molasses. Molasses can be included up to 10% level in broiler ration without deleterious effect on performance, haematological and serum biochemical parameters of the birds.
Keywords: Blood, Breed, Diet, Physiology, Vaccination