Comparison of strains and feed withdrawal durations on growth, haematological indices and serum biochemistry of broiler chickens at finisher phase
The present investigation was undertaken to assess the response of two broiler strains in terms of growth, haematological and serum indices to different durations of feed withdrawal regimen at finisher phase. A total of 180 day-old broiler chicks comprising 90 chicks each of Arbor Acre and Ross 308 were sourced from reputable hatchery. The chicks on strain basis were distributed into three feed withdrawal durations: T1 (control), T2- morning (8am-12noon) and T3- afternoon (12noon – 4pm). Each of the treatment was replicated three times. Results showed the existence of significant (P<0.01) differences between the two strains in respect of body weight and linear measurements at 4th and 6th week. Ross 308 broilers in most cases recorded superior mean values than Arbor Acre. It means that the former has superior genetic make-up than the latter. Feed withdrawal durations also had significant effects on body weight and linear measurements. Full-fed birds had superior mean values than morning and afternoon fed birds in most of the traits measured. However, morning and afternoon fed birds recorded similar mean values. In addition, there was no significant (P>0.05) effect of strain and feed withdrawal on haematological and serum indices except total protein, cholesterol, creatinine and albumin. The obtained haematological mean values were within the recommended range, and this implies that birds reared under feed withdrawal regimen are safe and healthful for human consumption.
Keywords: Strain, Arbor Acre, Ross 308, Haematology, feed
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