PERFORMANCE AND SERUM BIOCHEMISTRY OF GROWER RABBITS FED WITH SOME BROWSE SPECIES SUPPLEMENTED WITH A CONCENTRATE DIET.
Sixteen (16) growing male rabbits with an average initial weight of 925g were used for a 42 day feeding trial to evaluate their performance and serum biochemical profile They were randomly allotted into four (4 ) treatments of four ( 4)Rabbits each. Animals in all the treatment groups were fed a concentrate diet at 50g/rabbit/day followed by Browse (T1 Bamboo, T2 Senna, T3 Gmelina and T4 Teak at 100g/rabbit/day, one hour later, on cut and carry basis. All the animals were served water ad libitum. Completely randomized experimental design was used. Data were analyzed using a one way analysis of variance. Significant treatments means were separated using least significant difference (L.S.D) contained in SPSS version 16 (2016). Samples of the browse plants and the concentrate diet were analysed for their proximate composition using the standard procedure of AOAC (2000) Water intake values were significantly ((p>0.05) different and increased with increase in dry matter intake. T1 (180ml) had the highest water intake, while T3 (150ml) had the lowest. Values for daily weight gain (7.90 – 12.20g), feed conversion ratio,(7.68 – 8.78) and daily feed intake (68.77g – 93.90g) were all significantly different, with T1(Bamboo) having the best values, , concentrate intake values were however not significantly different. All the serum biochemical indices evaluated were all within normal range of values for growing Rabbits, all the values were not significantly different except alkaline phosphate (7.10 – 10.50 Iu/L). It was concluded that the concentrate and the browse species had adequate array of nutrients, bamboo was the most palatable of the browse plants evaluated, followed by Teak, Senna was the least. palatable, all the browse plants did not have adverse effects on the biood biochemical constituents of the Rabbits evaluated. All the browse plants evaluated were recommended for Rabbit feeding. Keywords: Serum, Water Intake, Grower Rabbit, Species, Supplement Diet,
Authors Name: Efienokwu J.N., Audu, M., Okolo, S.E., Apeh, U.J., Abalaka, A.E., Shettima, I., and Ajagbe, A.D (2020). INT’L JOURNAL OF AGRIC. AND RURAL DEV. INT’L JOURNAL OF AGRIC. AND RURAL DEV. ©SAAT FUTO 2020 Volume 23(2): 5378-5383.