Growth performance and nutrient digestibility of broiler chickens fed wood ashbased diets
Keywords:Neem, Shea butter, locust, ash
This study was conducted to determine the growth performance and nutrient digestibility of
broiler chickens fed wood-ash based diet. A total of 120 broiler chickens were randomly
allocated to four treatments in the completely randomized design. Treatment 1 was the
control while Treatments 2, 3, and 4 were Neem ash (NTA), Shea butter ash (SBA) and Locust
bean ash (LBA), respectively. Each treatment has three replicates and ten birds per replicate.
Data on growth rate, live weight, feed intake and mortality were collected while feed
conversion ratio was calculated. Apparent dry matter, crude protein, crude fibre, ether
extract and nitrogen free extract retention were also determined. All data collected were
analyzed using one-way analysis of variance. Starter phase results shows that birds on SBA ash had the highest final weight (366.00 g), body weight gain (173.71 g) and feed intake (546.03 g) and were significantly higher (p<0.05) than the control. At the finisher phase, all ash treatment had higher (p<0.05) final, daily weight gain and better (p<0.05) feed conversion than the control dietary. The digestibility results indicated birds on LBA diet had the highest crude fibre and ash content. The study showed that wood ash influenced growth performance and nutrient retention of broiler chickens. Chickens on ash-based diets performed better that the control at the finisher phase.