Effect of Dietary Levels of Cooked Lablab purpureus Beans
on the Performance of Broiler Chickens
A study was conducted to determine the response of broiler starter and
finisher chicks to dietary levels of Lablab purpureus beans processed
by boiling in water for 30 min at 100 °C. For both the starter and
the finisher phases, seven isonitrogenous diets containing 23.78% crude
protein for the starter and 20.91% crude protein for the finisher were
formulated to contain lablab seed meal at 0.0, 5.0, 10.0, 15.0, 20.0,
25.0 and 30.0% levels respectively. Diet 1, in each phase had no lablab
and served as the control. Each dietary treatment for the starter and
the finisher phases was replicated three times in a completely randomized
design. There were 25 birds per replicate. Feed and water were given ad
libitum. The experiment lasted from 0 to 4 weeks for the starter phase
and from 5 to 8 weeks for the finisher phase. Results obtained for the
starter phase shows significant (p<0.05) depression in final weight,
weight gain, feed intake, feed efficiency and feed-gain ratio. These parameters
decreased as the level of lablab seeds in the diets increased. However,
feed cost (/kg
feed and /bird)
were significantly (p<0.05) reduced as the level of lablab seed meal
increased in the starter diets. The results obtained for the finisher
phase also showed a similar trend. While there were significant (p<0.05)
decreases in final weight, weight gain, feed intake and feed efficiency
as the level of lablab seed meal increased in the diets, feed cost (/kg
feed and /bird)
were significantly (p<0.05) lowered. Parameters measured for carcass
analysis such as live weight and weights of the breast, thigh, wing, neck,
legs and head showed a significant (p<0.05) decrease as the dietary
levels of lablab seed meal increased. The PCV, Hb and the TP status of
the blood indicated significant (p<0.05) decreases as the levels of
lablab in the diets increased. However, Lablab purpureus beans
can be included up to 5% level in broiler starter and up to 10% level
in broiler finisher diets without any adverse effect on the performance
of the birds.
Increasing animal protein production in Nigeria and other developing
countries of the world has been advocated as the panacea to the imminent
problem of malnutrition in these countries (Ekenyem et al., 1999;
Ekenyem, 2002). According to Oruseibio and Onu (2000), the animal nutritionists
have a long-term challenge for investigative research into least cost
rations in order to guarantee sustainable livestock production. They further
stated that this challenge is ever increasing in the face of the current
economic problems in Nigeria, notably high feed costs. According to Ani
and Okorie (2003), the level of consumption of meat and animal protein
in Nigeria is estimated at 8 g per capita per day, which is about 27 g
less than the minimum requirement recommended by the National Research
Council (NRC) of the United States of America. Amaefule and Obioha (2001)
suggested that the best logical solution to our national meat scarcity
is to increase poultry production. But one of the major constraints towards
the realization of this objective is the ever-increasing cost of poultry
feeds arising from the high cost of feed ingredients. Earlier reports
by Akpodiete et al. (2001) showed that 70-80% of the total cost
of intensive broiler production is spent on feeds alone. Consequently
it becomes imperative that cheap alternative feedstuffs with little or
no import contents be used in place of the present scarce and costly feedstuffs
being used in feed formulation for broilers. This study was therefore
conducted to test the response of broilers chicks to graded levels of
Lablab purpureus beans.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
This study was carried out at the Poultry Research Unit of the National
Animal Production Research Institute (NAPRI), Ahmadu Bello University,
Shika, Zaria, Nigeria, from March to May 2003. Shika is geographically
located between latitude 11° 12`N and longitude 7° 33`E at an
altitude of 640 m above sea level (Akpa et al., 2002). Shika is
located about 20 km along the Zaria Sokoto road in Kaduna state, North
Western Nigeria. It has three distinct climatic seasons. These are the
cold dry season (November-February), the hot dry season (March-May) and
the wet season (June-October). The total annual rainfall ranges from 617
to 1365 mm with a 50 year average of 1041 mm Most of the rains fall between
July and September (Bawa et al., 2003b).
The Lablab purpureus beans used for this experiment is the Rongai
variety. It is milky white in colour. They were obtained from the Sabon-gari
market in Zaria, Nigeria. The cooking duration to properly process lablab
beans was 30 min as determined in an earlier experiment.
For each cooking time 50 L of water was first brought to boiling in a
200 L metal drum container. The batch (25 kg) of lablab beans was then
poured into the boiling water. From this point, the beans were cooked
for 30 min. At the end of the period of cooking, the excess water was
drained off and the cooked beans were sun dried for 3 days before milling.
The average ambient temperature for the three days of drying was 32°C
and average relative humidity was 35%. After sun drying, chemical evaluation
of the processed lablab beans was done according to AOAC (1990) procedure
Seven isonitrogenous and isocaloric rations were formulated to contain
lablab bean meal at 0.0, 5.0, 10.0, 15.0, 20.0, 25.0 and 30.0%, respectively
(Table 2 and 3). Each diet constituted a treatment and
each treatment was replicated three times in a completely randomized design.
There were 25 birds per replicate. Feed and water were provided ad
libitum. The starter phase lasted from 0-4 weeks, while the finisher
phase lasted from 5-8 weeks of age. The strain of birds used is the naked
neck broiler. The initial weight of the birds per replicate was taken
before the commencement of the experiment. They were thereafter weighed
weekly. For the first four weeks, the birds were fed on 23.78% CP broiler
starter rations followed by 20.91% CP broiler finisher rations from the
5th to the 8th week of age. At the end of the experiment, five birds per
replicate were bled to determine the value of some haematological constituents
such as Packed Cell Volume (PCV), Haemogglobin level (Hb) and Total Protein
(TP). Afterwards, five birds per replicate representing the average weight
of birds per replicate were fasted overnight except that they were given
water. They were weighed and slaughtered by cervical dislocation. They
were then dressed for carcass analysis.
||Chemical composition of cooked Lablab purpureus
|These are average values of 3 determinations of the
cooked lablab beans
||Composition of experimental broilers starter diets containing graded
levels of Lablab purpureus beans fed between 0 and 4 weeks
|Biomix premix supplied the following per
kg diet: Vit. A. 10000 iu, Vit. D3, 2000 iu,Vit. E, 25
mg Vit. K, 2 mg. Thiamine B1, 1.8 mg. Riboflavin B2,
5 mg. Pyridoxine B6, 3.5 mg. Niacin, 28 mg. Vit. B12,
0.015 mg. Pantothenic acid 7.5 mg. Folic acid, 0.75 mg, Biotin, 0.06
mg. Choline chloride 300 mg. Manganese, 40 mg. Zinc, 30 mg. Iron 20
mg. Copper, 3 mg. Iodine, 1 mg. Selenium, 0.2 mg. Cobalt, 0.2 mg
||Composition of experimental broiler finisher diets containing graded
level of Lablab purpureus beans fed between 5 and 8 weeks of
|Biomix premix supplied the following per kg diet: Vit.
A. 10000 iu, Vit. D3, 2000 iu Vit. E, 23 mg Vit. K, 2 mg.
Thiamine B1, 1.8 mg. Riboflavin B2, 5 mg. Pyridoxine
B6, 3 mg. Niacin, 27.5 mg. Vit. B12, 0.015 mg.
Pantothenic acid 7.5 mg. Folic acid, 0.75 mg, Biotin, 0.06 mg. Choline
chloride 300 mg. Manganese, 40 mg. Zinc, 30 mg. Iron 20 mg. Copper,
3 mg. Iodine, 1 mg. Selenium, 0.2 mg. Cobalt, 0.2 mg
Data collected included weekly feed intake, as well as weekly weight gain.
Mortality was recorded as they occurred. The weights of the various body
parts of the birds were also taken during the carcass analysis. All data
collected were subjected to the analysis of variance using the SAS (1985),
general linear model procedure. Differences between treatment means were
separated using Duncans Multiple Range Test (Steel and Torrie, 1980).
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
The result obtained in this study demonstrated that the level of
inclusion of lablab beans in broiler starter diets significantly (p>0.05)
reduced the performance of the birds in terms of final weight, weight
gain, feed intake and feed efficiency. Feed cost (/bird)
was significantly (p<0.05) reduced as the dietary levels of lablab
beans increased, but the level of inclusion of lablab beans had no significant
(p>0.05) effect on mortality rate.
The reduction in cost per kilogram feed and cost of feed per bird obtained
in this study is in line with the objective of the study and is supported
by the result obtained by Amaefule and Obioha (2001), Esonu (2001) and
Pezzato et al. (1997). These workers also observed significant
(p<0.05) reduction in feed cost per kilogramme feed and feed cost per
bird as the dietary levels of unconventional legumes beans such as boiled
pigeon pea seed, velvet beans and leucaena beans increased in the diets.
They attributed the cost reduction to the availability and cheapness of
these legume seeds. Feed cost was significantly (p<0.05) lower for
the lablab diets than for the control. Infact there was a corresponding
decrease in feed cost as the level of lablab in the diets increased. This
is the major thrust of nutritionist, that is, to lower feed cost while
not compromising on feed quality. Utilization of unconventional grain
legumes in poultry feed have been known to lower feed cost because they
are cheaper, as they are of less value for human consumption than the
conventional vegetable protein sources such as soyabean and groundnut
cakes (Etuk, 2001; Etuk et al., 2003). Abeke et al. (2003),
Dada et al. (2000), Esonu (2001), Esonu et al. (2003) and
Ogundipe et al. (2003) had reported that the solution to high cost
of poultry feed is the discovery, processing and harnessing of unconventional
sources of poultry ingredients for which there is little or no competition
from humans. Currently, lablab is far cheaper than groundnut cake and
their inclusion in poultry diets will definitely reduce feed cost. Therefore
the main objective of this research, which was to find out how lablab
beans, which is available and cheap in our locality, can be utilized in
the diets of broilers, to reduce feed cost and ultimately cost of production
has been realised.
On the other hand result obtained in this study showed a significant
(p>0.05) reduction in weight gain and feed intake as the level of lablab
beans increased in the diets (Table 4 and 5).
Etuk (2001) and Esonu (2001) had reported reduction in weight gain and
feed intake as the levels of velvet beans and pigeon pea increased in
the diets of broiler chickens. They argued that poor palatability arising
possibly from residual antinutritional factors present in the legume beans
they tested might be responsible for reduced feed intake and consequently
reduced weight gain. Weight gain in broilers is directly related to feed
intake, the quality of the feed as well as how efficiently the birds utilize
the feed (Dada et al. 2000). The reduction in feed intake observed
in this study as the level of lablab beans increased in the diets could
be attributed to poor palatability of the lablab seed meal. Also, the
low efficiency of feed utilization of diets containing lablab seed meal
may also be due to the presence of antinutritionl factors, which may still
remain in the cooked beans. According to Bawa et al. (2003a) phytic
acid and tannin content of lablab seeds are highly resistant to heat and
only about 31 and 46% of phytic acid and tannin respectively are destroyed
after boiling lablab beans for 30 min at 100°C. This means that a
substantial amount of these antinutritional factors may still remain in
the boiled lablab beans, which can still exert their negative influences
on growth and feed utilization resulting in poor performance. It therefore
becomes clear that with increase in the dietary levels of lablab, there
was a corresponding negative effect. Akanji et al. (2003) and Balogun
et al. (2001) have reported low feed intake in broilers and young
pigs respectively when cooked Jackbean and full fat soyabean were fed
as replacement for soyacake. According to the authors the nutritive value
and aroma of soyabean cakes are far better than those of other legume
seeds. This they believed has a direct impact on the performance of the
animals. Najime (2003) reported that soyacake and groundnut cake rank
top ahead of other grain legume seed meals in terms of nutritive value
and consequently give better performance when fed in poultry diets as
compared to when unconventional legume seeds such as lablab beans is fed.
||Response of broilers to graded levels of Lablab purpureus beans
in broiler starter diets (0-4 weeks)
|Means within the same row with different
superscripts are significantly (p<0.05) different. SEM = Standard
Error of Means
||Response of broilers to graded dietary levels of Lablab purpureus
beans (Finisher phase 5-8 weeks)
|Means within the same row with different superscripts
are significantly (p<0.05) different. SEM = Standard Error of Means
This shows that soyacake and groundnut cake are better than lablab in supplying
necessary nutrients for growth. This is because the nutrient profiles especially
for the crude protein
content and the essential amino acid
soyacake and groundnut cake are better than that in lablab seeds. The nutrients
in groundnut cakes can easily be made available to the birds because of
little or no antinutritional factors
as opposed to the negative interference
of the residual trypsin inhibitor and other antinutritional factors
may be present in the lablab beans. According to Balogun et al.
unconventional grain legume proteins are of poor quality in terms of poor
level of essential amino acid
s such as methionine and lysine. The authors
argued that proper processing such as converting them to their cake forms
could enhance the quality of protein of these legumes. Etuk et al.
(2003) suggested that for optimum performance to be obtained in broilers
fed unconventional grain legume seed meal in their diets, such diets should
be fortified with the necessary essential amino acid
s. It becomes clear
therefore that although lablab beans used in its present cooked form reduces
feed cost, it does not necessarily translate to better profit margin if
the required market weight of the broilers is not attained at the right
This means that although it is generally agreed and has been
proved by this study that the utilization of unconventional grain legumes
can lower feed cost, these legumes need to be further processed possibly
into the form of cakes to reduce to the barest minimum the influence of
antinutritional factors and then fortified with necessary amino acids
before they can be properly utilized by broiler chickens. This calls for
Percent mortality was not significantly (p<0.05) affected by feeding
the lablab seed meal in broiler diets. This is an indication that the
lablab cooked for 30 min is safe for incorporation in poultry diets. Similar
result was reported by Akinmutimi (2003) who observed reduced mortality
in broilers fed well-cooked sword beans as opposed to high mortality in
birds fed on diets containing raw sword beans. This may be related to
the destruction of antinutritional factors present in the legume as a
result of heat treatment.
The result of the carcass analysis shows significant (p<0.05) difference
between treatments means (Table 6). The values obtained indicate significant
(p>0.05) decreases in the percentages of body parts in relation to
live weight as the level of the lablab in the diet increased. This may
indicate a proper development of the various body parts in those birds
on lower lablab dietary levels because of the possibility of better nutrient
intake and utilization permitted by higher levels of ground nut cake in
the diets. However, the values obtained for the liver and the pancreas
indicate that there was a significant (p<0.05) increase in the weight
of these organs as the level of lablab increased in their diets. This
may be due to higher concentrations of certain residual anti-nutrient
factors in the cooked lablab beans. The hypertrophy of the pancreas may
have resulted from their increased activities to produce more trypsin.
However the weight of the gizzard, spleen and the heart decreased as the
dietary levels of lablab beans increased (Table 6). This could be as a
result of the weight of the birds, which decreased as the dietary level
of lablab beans increased. The result is however is similar to that obtained
by Ani and Okeke (2003), Amaefule and Onwudike (2000), Amaefule and Obioha
(2001) and Akpodiete et al. (2001). These authors reported increases
in the weights of the liver and pancreas in broilers fed diets containing
unconventional grain legume beans processed by cooking, roasting and by
fermentation. They reasoned that certain antinutritional factors, which
may have not been destroyed by the various treatments applied on these
legumes, might be responsible for the hypertrophy of some of the organs
like the liver and the pancreas. This buttresses the need for better processing
techniques that will eliminate the problem of antinutritional factors
in grain legumes fed to broilers.
The result of the haematological profile presented in Table 7 indicates
a higher level of Packed Cell Volume, (PCV) Total Protein (TP) and Haemoglobin
(Hb) contents in birds fed the control diet. The values of these parameters
decreased insignificantly (p<0.05) as the level of lablab in the diets
increased. However these values falls within the range of PCV, TP and
Hb reported by Oladele (2000) for healthy birds. According to the author,
the level of PCV, TP and Hb content of the blood of chickens are a factor
of their health status and nutrient intake.
||Response of broilers to graded dietary levels of Lablab purpureus
beans. (Carcass analysis)
|Means within the same column with different superscripts
are significantly (p<0.05) different. SEM = Standard Error of Means.
LW = Live Weight. Sl. wt = Slaughter weight. Df. wt = Deafeathered
weight. Dr. wt = Dressed weight
||Response of broilers to graded dietary levels of Lablab purpureus
beans (Haematological parameters)
|SEM = Standard Error of the Means. PCV = Packed Cell
Volume. TP = Total Protein. Hb = Haemoglobin
The author stated that adequately fed birds in good health are likely to
have higher levels of blood protein and packed cell volume as opposed to
inadequately fed or under-nourished birds. The higher levels of these blood
parameters obtained for birds in the control diet may indicate better nutrient
availability and utilization by the birds.
Results obtained from this study indicate reduction in feed cost per
kilogramme feed and feed cost per bird by feeding graded dietary levels
of lablab beans in the diets of broiler chickens. However production parameters
such as final weight, weight gain and feed conversion efficiency decreased
as the level of lablab beans in the diets increased. This indicates that
further processing is needed to reduce the antinutritional factors in
lablab beans so that broiler chickens can fully utilize the nutrient content
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