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Brazilian Journal of Poultry Science

versão impressa ISSN 1516-635Xversão On-line ISSN 1806-9061


FILARDI, RS et al. Pearl millet utilization in ccommercial laying hen diets formulated on a total or digestible amino acid basis. Rev. Bras. Cienc. Avic. [online]. 2005, vol.7, n.2, pp.99-105. ISSN 1516-635X.

An experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of replacing corn with pearl millet in commercial layer diets, formulated according to the minimal requirements for total and digestible amino acids. Two hundred and forty Lohmann LSL laying hens with 25 weeks of age were distributed in a completely randomized experimental design according to a 2 x 5 factorial arrangement with 3 replicates of 8 birds. Feed was formulated on two amino acid basis (total or digestible) according to Rostagno et al. (2000) and there were five pearl millet inclusion levels (0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%). Performance and egg quality were evaluated during five periods of 21 days.At the end of each period, feed intake, egg production, egg weight and feed conversion were evaluated. In the last three days of each period, the following egg quality parameters were evaluated: Haugh Unit, yolk pigmentation index, egg specific weight, shell percentage and shell thickness. Digestible amino acid requirements resulted in decreased feed intake (p<0.01) and increased production costs per mass of eggs (kg) or per dozen eggs (p<0.01) compared to total amino acid requirements. There was a linear reduction in feed intake, egg production, egg weight and yolk pigmentation index with increasing inclusion levels of pearl millet. Therefore, increasing levels of replacement of corn by pearl millet affected bird performance negatively. Besides, production costs were higher with increasing pearl millet levels.

Palavras-chave : Digestible amino acids; egg quality; laying hens; pearl millet; performance; total amino acids.

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