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African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development
Rural Outreach Program
ISSN: 1684-5358
EISSN: 1684-5358
Vol. 10, No. 11, 2010, pp. 4444-4457
Bioline Code: nd10122
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development, Vol. 10, No. 11, 2010, pp. 4444-4457

Okpanachi, U.; Aribido, S.O. & Daikwo, I.S.


The growth and haematological response of growing rabbits to diets containing graded levels of Sun dried Bovine Rumen Content (SBRC) was studied for a period of ten weeks. The rumen content was collected from Nsukka abattoirs and dried in sun, ground and stored in sacks. The Composition of SBRC used in this study is given as: 31.90% crude fibre; 7.95% moisture content; 0.75% ether extract; 16.20% Ash; 25.70% nitrogen free extract; 13.56 crude protein and energy of 4220 kcal/kg. Five treatments coded as T1 (control diet), T2, T3, T4 and T5 were used. The levels of inclusion of SBRC in T1 (control diet), T2, T3, T4 and T5 were 0%, 10%, 20%, 30% and 40%, respectively. Parameters observed were average daily and weekly feed intake, average daily and weekly water intake, average initial body weight, average weekly and daily body weight gain, feed cost per 1000g feed, feed cost per 1000g gain, feed conversion ratio, dressing percentage, weight of internal organs and haematological parameters. Generally, SBRC diets performed better than the control group. However, only weekly feed and water intakes were significantly different (p< 0.01). Numerically, the rabbits on T5 recorded the best water and feed intake, body weight gain; feed cost per 1000g feed, weight of internal organs and White Blood Cell count (WBC), while those on T4 had the best feed cost per kg gain and Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR). The best Packed Cell Volume (PCV) and Red Blood Cell count (RBC) were obtained with the rabbits fed T3 diet, while T1 had the best dressing percentage. No mortality occurred. The study indicated that SBRC could feed rabbits at 40% level of inclusion, thus providing a cheaper source of feeding and also help reduce environmental pollution. However, T4 with 30% SBRC is recommended, since rabbits on this diet had the best feed cost per 1000g gain (N/1000g) and feed conversion ratio.

Anaemia, Digesta, Immunosuppressed, Rabbits, growth

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