Feeding Value of Azolla (Azolla sp.) Meal in Broiler Diets

by Open Science Repository Agriculture
(July 2013)


This study was conducted to determine the nutritive and feeding value of different levels of azolla meal as component of broiler diets. Specifically, it aimed to: a) determine the nutrient composition of azolla meal; b) evaluate the effects of different levels azolla meal as component of broiler diets in terms of growth performance, and dressing percentage; c) evaluate the effects of azolla meal on the organoleptic characteristics of baked broiler meat; and, d) assess the economy of azolla meal as component of broiler diets.

Five dietary treatments were used in the feeding trial. Three levels of azolla meal (5, 10 and 15%) served as components of Diets II, III and IV, respectively. Diet 1(no Azolla meal) and Diet V (Commercial Broiler Feed) served as positive and negative control diets, respectively.

The dietary treatments were arranged in a Completely Randomized Design (CRD), replicated thrice with ten birds per replication. The Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) was used in the organoleptic evaluation.

Dry matter recovery of azolla was 5.42%. Complete proximate analysis revealed that azolla meal contained 10.6% crude protein, 0.90% fat, 0.23.70% fiber, 19.60% moisture, 0.50% ash, and 44.70% NFE. Energy determination revealed GE content of 2904 cal/g, while mineral analysis revealed 1.6% Ca and 0.3 % P contents.

Average initial weights of the experimental birds were statistically similar in all treatments, while the final weight differed significantly between azolla-fed and control diet-fed birds.

The feed consumption of birds were similar on the first week of rearing but highly significant differences were noted during the succeeding weeks until the termination of the study. The same observation was also noted in the FCR of birds given the different dietary treatments where birds in Diet V outperformed those in the other dietary groups with a value of 1.77 as compared to those birds given Diets I, II,III and IV with FCR values of 2.05, 2.12, 2.31, and 2.56, respectively.

In terms of absolute value, experimental birds fed with commercial feed gave the highest dressing percentage of 78.49 percent while those in Diet IV (15% azolla meal) gave the lowest absolute dressing yield at 77.13 percent.

Experimental birds fed with 0% azolla meal gave the lowest feed cost per unit gain in weight and the highest return above feed cost. Experimental birds given the 15% azolla meal (Treatment IV) incurred the highest feed cost per gain-in-body weight which translated to lowest returns above feed cost.

Baked meats from broilers fed with different levels of azolla meal were moderately desirable in terms of color and appearance. Statistical analysis revealed significant differences in juiciness, tenderness, flavor and aroma, and general acceptability. Baked meats of broilers from the two control diets were moderately tender and juicy while the baked meats from the treated treatments were slightly tender and juicy. The flavor and aroma, and the general acceptability of baked meat from all the treatment were moderately like and accepted except the baked meat taken broilers fed with commercial feed which is like slightly and accepted.

With all these findings and information, it could be deduced azolla meal could be safely incorporated in the diets of broilers. Broilers given 5% AM in the diet performed similarly with those in the control diets in terms of the production, economic, dressing yield and organoleptic evaluations.

Keywords: azolla meal, Azzola sp, broiler diets, feeding.

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Feeding Value of Azolla (Azolla sp.) Meal in Broiler Diets

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