Effect of dietary supplementation of ensiled rice straw with molasses on the performance, nutrient digestibility and haematology of Yankasa rams
A study was carried out to determine the effect of feeding ensiled rice straw with molasses as supplement on growth performance and nutrient digestibility of Yankasa rams. Fifteen Yankasa rams with average weight of 17k±0.5g and aged between 7-9 months were used for 90days feeding trial. The straw was ensiled with 5% urea and was fed as a basal diet. Five graded levels of molasses; 0, 2.5, 3.5, 4.5 and 5.5% were used as supplement and were designated as treatments 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, respectively. Fifteen Yankasa rams were then allotted to five treatments in a completely randomized design and were replicated three times with one animal per replicate. Results shows that all parameters evaluated for growth performance were significantly (P<0.05) influenced by dietary treatments. Average Daily feed intake was significantly (P<0.05) in animals on treatment 5(454.42g), while those on the control diets T1 (372.43g) had the lowest average daily feed intake. Similarly, animals on T5 (108.11g) had the highest average daily weight gain when compared to those on T2 (69.11g) and the control T1 (73.33g). Feed conversion ratio was better in animals fed T3 (4.14) and T4 (4.14) and followed by those on T5 (4.20). The result of Nutrient intake though significantly different across the treatment groups, did not followed any particular pattern. The rumen pH and ammonia concentration before and after feeding were similar across the treatments. The haematological measurements were all similar across the treatments, while the serum biochemical indices were significantly different (P<0.05) across the treatments except for glucose.
Keywords: Intake, Weight gain, Haematology, Yankasa rams, Ensiled rice straw
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