PERFORMANCE, EGG QUALITY CHARACTERISTICS AND SERUM BIOCHEMISTRY OF LAYING BIRDS FED DIET CONTAINING NEEM LEAF MEAL

ABSTRACT
A study was conducted with 300 “Bachelor” Brown laying birds to determine the performance, egg quality characteristics and serum biochemistry of laying birds fed diets containing neem leaf meal. The birds were randomly selected at nineteenth week of age into five treatment groups with three replicates per treatment with each replicate containing twenty birds. The experiment was laid out in a completely randomized design (CRD). Five isocaloric and isonitrogenous diets designated as T1, T2, T3, T4 and T5 containing neem leaf meal at 0, 2, 4, 6 and 8% levels of diets were fed to the birds. Proximate analysis of neem leaf meal on dry matter basis was carried out. The birds’ performances were measured and calculated on daily basis in terms of average feed intake, average body weight change, feed conversion ratio, egg number, hen day egg production and economics of egg production. Twenty four eggs per treatment at eight eggs per replicate were collected and analyzed for both internal and external quality. Blood samples were collected from nine birds per treatment at three birds per replicate and used to determine the serum biochemical indices, which included serum cholesterol, creatinine, albumen, glucose, high density lipoprotein, low density lipoprotein, triglyceride and urea. Data obtained from the proximate analysis of the neem leaf meal showed that the processed neem leaf meal had a crude protein of 21.76%, crude fibre of 17.81%, ether extract of 3.68%, ash of 7.04% and nitrogen-free extract of 49.71%, respectively. Results for average feed intake revealed that birds fed diet 1 (control) consumed significantly (p < 0.05) higher feed (149.74g) which was similar (p > 0.05) to those of birds fed diet 2 (147.95g), but differed significantly (p < 0.05) from the feed intake of birds fed diets 3 (143.50g), 4 (138. 41g) and 5 (133.10g), respectively, which were themselves different from each other. Effect of diet on average egg production differed significantly (p < 0.05) with higher value of 52 for birds fed diet 5, while birds fed diets 1 (49), 3 (49) and 4 (50) had similar (p > 0.05) values which differed significantly (p < 0.05) from birds fed diet 2 (47). Dietary treatment effect on cost benefit showed that birds fed diet 1 (control) had the highest (p < 0.05) cost/kg of feed, cost/dozen egg, cost of feed consumed/bird and feed cost per kg egg produced among the treatment groups. Effect of dietary treatment on albumen weight showed that birds fed diets 2 (36.72g) and 3 (36.02g) were similar (p > 0.05) to each other but were significantly (p < 0.05) higher than those fed diets 1 (35.61g), 4 (35.59g) and 5 (35.95g), which were themselves similar (p > 0.05) to each other. Data obtained for albumen width was significantly (p < 0.05) higher for birds fed diet 4 (82.86mm) which was similar (p > 0.05) to birds fed diet 2 (82.46mm), 3 (82.39mm) and 5 (82.06mm), which were themselves similar (p > 0.05) to each other, but was different from that fed diet 1 (control) with value of 81.70mm. Birds fed diets 3 (0.38) and 2 (0.37) were similar (p > 0.05) for yolk index, but differed significantly (p < 0.05) from those fed diets 1 (0.35), 4 (0.36) and 5 (0.36), which were themselves similar (p > 0.05) to each other. Yolk colour differed significantly (p < 0.05) with eggs of birds fed diet 5 having a superior value of 9.6, while eggs of birds fed diets 1, 2, 3 and 4 had respective values of 2.1, 3.9, 4.4 and 7.8, which were significantly (p < 0.05) different from each other. Yolk cholesterol values were significantly (p < 0.05) different among the dietary groups, with birds fed diet 5 (4.96) having the least value, while birds on diets 1, 2, 3 and 4 had values of 12.23, 9.23, 7.85 and 6.32 respectively, which differed significantly (p < 0.05) from themselves. Effect of dietary treatment on egg shell thickness showed that eggs of birds fed diets1 (0.47mm) and 2 (0.46mm) were superior (p < 0.05) to those of birds fed 3 (0.41mm), 4 (0.42mm) and 5 (0.43mm) which were also similar (p > 0.05) to each other. Eggs of birds fed diet 2 had a significantly (p < 0.05) higher mean shell weight of 9.31g, which was different from the mean shell weight eggs of birds fed diets 1 (7.86g) and 5 (7.96g), which were themselves similar (p > 0.05) to each other and to those of birds fed diets 3 (8.62g) and 4 (8.60g) which were similar (p > 0.05) to each other also. Results of serum cholesterol were significantly (p < 0.05) different among the dietary groups. Birds fed diet 1 had the highest value of 184.33mg/dl, which differed significantly (p < 0.05) from those of birds fed diets 5 (101.21mg/dl). Birds fed diets 2, 3 and 4 had serum cholesterol values of 177.17mg/dl, 148.13mg/dl and 119.27mg/dl, respectively which were also significantly (p < 0.05) different from each other. Data obtained for albumen was highest (p < 0.05) in birds fed diet 5 (1.65g/dl), which was similar (p > 0.05) to that of birds fed diet 2 (1.60g/dl), but differed (p < 0.05) from birds fed diets 1 (1.57g/dl), 3 (1.55g/dl), and 4 (1.58g/dl), which were themselves similar (p > 0.05) to each other. It is evident from the present study that neem leaf meal can be incorporated into the diet of laying birds up to 8% without any negative or declining effect on the egg production and egg quality characteristics and eventually leads to a cheaper, better egg choice with low level of cholesterol in the eggs.

CHAPTER ONE
1.0 INTRODUCTION
Nigeria is the largest economy in Africa with a population of over 174 million persons. This amazing data calls for a sustained approach to provide its citizens with quality food especially safe and affordable animal protein. Unfortunately, the level of animal protein intake is absolutely low at 4.5g/day per caput (USDA, 2013). This level of animal protein intake is not befitting of a nation that is the largest economy in Africa and the 26th in the world.

Poultry production remains the fastest means to provide animal protein to a protein hungry nation like Nigeria. Poultry meat and egg are still widely consumed with little or no religious or social constraints. Egg has been described as nature’s convenience food since it comes in a hygienic pack and can easily be stored and readily opened and cooked. Also eggs are valuable and acceptable in the diets of younger and older people whose caloric needs are lower and who sometimes have difficulty in chewing certain types of food (Oluyemi and Robert, 2007). Egg is a good source of low cost high quality protein providing 6.3grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) in one egg for a caloric cost of only 68 calories (Oluyemi and Robert, 2007). The structure of humans and animal is built on protein. Man relies on animal and vegetable protein for the supply of amino acids.

The body rearranges the nitrogen to create the pattern of amino acids required. Chicken egg is the most commonly eaten poultry product that is capable of supplying all the essential amino acids for humans while also providing several vitamins such as vitamin A, riboflavin (vitamin B2), folic acid (vitamin B9), vitamin B6, vitamin B12, choline and minerals such as iron, calcium, phosphorus and potassium (Oluyemi and Robert, 2007). It is worth noting that all of the egg’s fat soluble vitamins A, D and E are in the egg yolk (Chris, 2005). As a food, yolks contain all of the egg’s fat and cholesterol, and about one-fifth of the protein (Oluyemi and Robert, 2007). The yolk makes up about 33% of the liquid weight of the egg. It contains approximately 60 calories, three times the caloric content of the egg white. The yolk of one egg (grade one) contains approximately 2.7g protein, 210mg cholesterol, 0.61g carbohydrate and 4.51g total fat (USDA, 2013). Egg yolks also contain the long chain Omega-3-fatty acid deoxyhydroxynucleic acid (DHA) which is necessary for the brain and proper retinal function in the eye, and the long chain Omega-6-fatty acid, arachidonic acid (AA) which is required for healthy skin, hair, libido, reproduction, growth and response to injury (Chris, 2005). These fatty acids are primarily needed by young children, pregnant and lactating women and people with degenerative diseases involving oxidative stress, especially those of the nervous system such as Alzheimer (Garrigus, 2007). According to National Cholesterol Education Programme (1991), one egg yolk contains 75mg of arachidonic acid (AA) and 20mg of DHA. Also, studies by Ologhobo et al. (2008) added further evidence to the theory that an egg whose yolk is a rich source of vision protective carotenoids, including not only lutein but also zeaxanthin may reduce the risk of developing age related muscular degeneration (AMD). Though egg yolk contains less lutein and zeaxanthin than other foodstuffs, their carotenoids are easily absorbed in the retina.

Thus, the abundance of natural readily available amino acids, minerals and vitamins makes the egg an important part of human diet. However, limited egg consumption has been recommended for many years due to the considerable yolk cholesterol content (Weggemans et al., 2001). Today, many consumers limit their intake of egg due to the adverse publicity about saturated fats and cholesterol whereas health professionals suggest decreasing saturated fat intake only. It is a known fact that cholesterol at certain risk level predisposes man, especially the present day sedentary professionals to coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and obesity (Murray et al., 2003). Also, because of recent understanding of the association between total plasma cholesterol and the incidence of heart disease, people are being advised to consume not more than 300mg cholesterol daily (Lada and Rudel, 2003) and limit their consumption of eggs, which contain about 213mg cholesterol per egg ( National Cholesterol Education Programme, 1991).

The livestock industry in developing countries is plagued by numerous challenges among which is scarcity of feed ingredients that are in strict competition with man’s dietary need. The high cost of conventional feedstuff has already sent a lot of livestock farmers out of business, thus leading to reduction in overall animal products available for human dietary need. The provision of feed alone has been reported to account for 60-80% of the total cost of poultry production in developing countries (Esonu et al., 2006). In view of this, there is.....

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Item Type: Ph.D Material  |  Attribute: 140 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word  |  Price: N3,000  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.
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