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Evaluation of para grass (Urochloa mutica) as litter material for laying hens

Diarra, Siaka S. and Neiubi, Sairusi and Lesumairotorua, Jiuteci and Verau, Limiva (2014) Evaluation of para grass (Urochloa mutica) as litter material for laying hens. Research Opinions in Animal & Veterinary Sciences (ROAVS), 4 (10). pp. 560-563. ISSN 2221-1896

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The increasing demand for wood shaving, a conventional litter material, necessitates research into alternative sources of litter for poultry. A total of 90 Shaver Brown pullets were used in a 126 day experiment to investigate the suitability of Para grass as litter material. The birds were allotted to 9 floor pens containing 10 birds each. The floor in 3 randomly selected pens was covered with one of the following materials: wood shavings (WSH), chopped Para grass hay (CPGH) and full Para grass hay (FPGH) in a completely randomised design. Growth and body weight change, feather count, and egg performance parameters formed the major response criteria. Results showed no significant effects of litter material on body weight change, feed intake, hen-day egg production, egg weight and egg mass. There was however, a significant increase in the count of floor primary feathers on FPGH compared to the control WSH and CPGH. No caking was observed on any of the materials. These results were used to conclude that Para grass hay can effectively replace wood shavings as litter material for laying hens. The substitution will save cost as well as reduce the invasive effect of Para grass in the study area.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: S Agriculture > SF Animal culture
Divisions: Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE) > School of Agriculture and Food Technology
Depositing User: Siaka Diarra
Date Deposited: 21 Sep 2014 21:51
Last Modified: 05 May 2016 03:07

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