The performance, haematological indices and serum chemistry of two breeds of broiler chickens fed Ficus exasperate leaf powder and Vitamin C supplemented diets

C. O. Osowe, O. A. Adu, O. D. Oloruntola, C. A. Chineke


A total of 240 Arbor acre (AB) and 240 Cobb 500 (CO) broiler chickens given Ficus exasperate leaf powder (1%FELP) and 200mg/kg Vitamin C (VC) supplemented diets were studied for performance and blood indices. Diets 1 and 2 (controls) were fed to AB and CO, respectively; Diets 3 and 4 (VC supplemented) were fed to AB and CO, respectively; Diets 5 and 6 (FELP supplemented) were fed to AB and CO, respectively; while diets 7 and 8 (VC+FELP supplemented) were fed to AB and CO, respectively. At 6 age weeks, body weight gain (BWG) of CO improved (P<0.05) over the AB birds, while VC improved BWG of CO over AB. VC improved the feed conversion ratio (FCR). VC and FEPL increased the packed cell volume and the red blood cell (RBC); while the RBC of CO was higher (P<0.05) than AB. The VC and FELP increased the haemoglobin concentration. The white blood cell count improved (P<0.05) by FELP. The VC and VC x FELP reduced (P<0.05) the serum aspartate aminotransferase concentration. VC and FELP reduced (P<0.05) the serum creatinine concentration. The FELP reduces (P<0.05) the serum cholesterol. Conclusively, CO and 200 mg/kg Vitamin C supplementation support optimal body weight gain. For better immunity and hypocholesterolemia, 1 % FELP supplementation is indicated; while 1 % FELP might be coupled with 200 mg/kg Vitamin C to enhance feed consumption, red blood cell count, packed cell volume, haemoglobin concentration; to prevent liver and tissue damage and protect renal cells from damage in broiler chickens.
Key words: avian; genetic make-up; phytogens; citric acid; stress.

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