Effect of Ocimum gratissimum L. on Growth and Egg Size of Japanese Quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica, Temmick)
Asian Journal of Biology,
There is need to look for ingredients to be added to the poultry feed used to raise quail birds for better results on the birds and to enhance quail farming in Nigeria.
Aim: This study was carried out to conduct a twelve weeks feeding trial to determine the effect of feeding varying levels of Ocimum gratissimum on growth, egg size using two (2) weeks old Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica).
Materials and Methods: One hundred and twenty birds were allocated to four dietary treatment groups with three (3) replicates of ten (10) birds each in a completely randomized design experiment with feeding ratio of Control (C) containing 0 g/kg; T1, 20 g/kg; T2, 40 g/kg and T3, 60 g/kg of dried and ground Ocimum gratissimum. Feed and water were provided ad libitum throughout the experimental period.
Results: The result obtained showed that for Weight gain (WG), Percentage weight gain (PWG), specific growth rate (SRG), feed conversion ratio (FCR), the T1, (20 g/kg) had the highest values (122.56 g, 234%, 0.623 and 23.49 respectively) while T3, (60 g/kg) had the least values (81.92 g, 156%, 0.487, 34.92 respectively) as a result of weight loss. But the C, (0 g/kg) had the highest value of 9.149 for protein efficiency ratio (PER) as T3, (60 g/kg) had the least value (5.535). T2, (40 g/kg) had the highest values for mean egg weight, length, width (10.01, 8.77 and 7.81 respectively) while T1, (20 g/kg) had the least values (8.84, 7.63 and 6.70 respectively). Weight gain, feed utilization indices and egg size were the response criteria that were monitored, recorded and subjected to Anova and T-test. There were significant difference (P≤0.05) observed for mean weight gain, percentage weight gain, specific growth rate, food conversion ratio, protein efficiency ratio, circumference of the widest point of the eggs at long axis (length) while no significant difference (P>0.05) were observed for weight of eggs and circumference of the widest point of the eggs at short axis (width).
Conclusion: From this study, quail birds fed T1, (20 g/kg) gave the results with no negative effect on the birds and can be recommended in Japanese quail diets.