Rock phosphate as replacement for bone meal in rabbit diets

  • T.J. Agedeson
  • T.T. Kuka
  • F.G. Kaankuka
Keywords: Calcium, Carcass, Growth Performance, Phosphorus, Visceral organs


Bone meal as mineral source has become unattractive for animal diets in developed countries due to fear of diseases transfer from animal to animal. Twenty four (24) mongrel weaned rabbits weighing 291.67±3.23 g were randomly allotted to six dietary treatments with four replicates to evaluate the effect of replacing bone meal with crude rock phosphate. Feed and water were available ad-libitum. Rock phosphate replaced bone meal at levels of 0, 20, 40, 60, 80 and 100 % respectively. Performance data were monitored weekly. At the end of the study, 84 days, two rabbits per treatment were slaughtered for evaluation of carcass parameters and visceral organ. The results showed that dietary treatments significantly affected (P< 0.05) all performance parameters across the groups, rock phosphate inclusion increased growth performance and carcass at 20 % replacement and thereafter decreased performance with increased replacement levels. Growth performance, carcass characteristics and visceral parameters significantly decreased (P<0.05) with increased percentage of rock phosphate beyond 20 %. Replacement of bone meal with crude rock phosphate beyond 20 % depressed average daily feed intake and average daily weight gain but did not affect feed conversion ratio of weaned rabbits. It is therefore, recommended that since there was no deleterious and adverse effect of replacing bone meal with rock phosphate at 20 % inclusion levels, rock phosphate can replaced 20 % bone meal in diets, for optimum performance of rabbits.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1119-4308