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|Title:||Energy and Protein Requirements of Growing Indigenous Chickens in Kenya|
|Keywords:||Energy and Protein Requirements -- Indigenous Chickens|
|Abstract:||Indigenous chickens contribute signiﬁcantly to the poultry industry in Kenya. Their contribution to meat and egg production can be enhanced further by improving their nutrition and management. Research geared towards these aspects is inadequate. This study was therefore carried out to determine energy and protein requirements of growing indigenous chickens of Kenya. A knowledge of energy and protein requirements will facilitate ration formulation for indigenous chickens kept in conﬁnement. indigenous chickens were categorized into 3 weight classes: Heavy, Medium and Light. Semen from males of each category was used to inseminate hens of the respective classes and the resulting eggs were collected and incubated. The hatched chicks were used as experimental material in two experiments. A free choice (cafeteria) feeding system was employed in experiment one to estimate energy and protein requirements of indigenous chicken from the 5th to 21st weeks of age. Maize and soyabean meals were offered as choice diets. Feed and water were provided ad /ibiturn, and weekly data on weight gain, feed intake and feed: gain ratio (FCR) were collected. ln this experiment, 242 chicks were transferred from the brooder into floor pens, after sexing on the 28th day. Each weight class was represented by 4 replicates of both sexes. From the daily feed intake, energy and protein requirements were also computed on weekly basis. In experiment two, twenty four, 21 week old indigenous chicken were used to determine apparent metabolisable energy (AMEn) values of maize and soyabean. Droppings were collected quantitatively, homogenised and oven dried. The experimental design was completely randomized design with four replicates of 3 chickens each. Gross energy of diets and droppings was determined using an adiabatic bomb calorimeter. In experiment 1, the results obtained showed signiﬁcant differences (P<0.05) in feed intake between the sexes in all the three classes. There were also significant differences (F><0.05) in crude protein intake among the weight classes but not between sexes. There were no significant differences (P>0.05) in the other parameters measured except in growth rates where significant differences between the sexes and among the weight categories were observed between ‘13th and 21st weeks. The AMEn values obtained in experiment 2 for maize and soyabean meals were 26921339 and 2786:3131 kcal ME/Kg, respectively. Information on energy density obtained in experiment 2 was used in estimation of AMEn intake in experiment 1. Heavy birds consumed significantly (P<0.05) higher metabolisable energy (kcall day) than both the medium and light ones except in the 15th and 17th weeks. There were however no significant differences (P>O_O5) between the medium and light birds. AMEn consumed by female birds was lower than those for males (P<0.05), except in the 5th, 6th and 7th weeks. The results also showed that between the ages of 5-8 weeks, a CP level of 18 % and approximately 3000 kcal/kg ME, should adequately cover the protein and energy requirements of ‘heavy’ indigenous chickens , whereas ‘light’ indigenous chickens would require a CP level of 17% but the same den sity of ME during the same growth period. From 8-14 week period, ‘heavy’ and ‘light’ indigenous chickens require diets containing 16 % and 14 % crude protein, respectively, and approximately 2600kca|/kg ME. Thereafter, the CF’-levels in the ration for the ‘heavy’ and ‘light’ birds may be decreased to 14 and 12 %, respectively, with an energy density of approximately 2400 kcal/kg ME for both diets. These findings may be used in formulating complete rations for indigenous chickens where necessary.|
|Appears in Collections:||Faculty of Agriculture|
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