Dec 22, 2015 at 08:28

Feed form and energy concentration of the diet affect growth performance and digestive tract traits of brown-egg laying pullets from hatching to 17 weeks of age

The influence of feed form and energy concentration of the diet on growth performance and the development of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) was studied in brown-egg laying pullets. Diets formed a 2 x 5 factorial with 2 feed forms (mash vs. crumbles) and 5 levels of energy differing in 50 kcal AMEn/kg. For the entire study (0 to 17 wk of age) feeding crumbles increased ADFI (52.9 vs. 49.7 g; P < 0.001) and ADG (12.7 vs. 11.6 g; P < 0.001) and improved feed conversion ratio (FCR; 4.18 vs. 4.27; P < 0.001). An increase in the energy content of the diet decreased ADFI linearly (P < 0.001) and improved FCR quadratically (P < 0.01) but energy intake (kcal AMEn/d) was not affected. BW uniformity was higher (P < 0.05) in pullets fed crumbles than in those fed mash but was not affected (P > 0.05) by energy content of the diet. At 5, 10, and 17 wk of age, the relative weight (RW, % BW) of the GIT and the gizzard, and gizzard digesta content were lower (P < 0.05 to P < 0.001) and gizzard pH was

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