Revista Brasileira de Ciência Avícola
Print version ISSN 1516-635X
BARRETO, MSR et al. Plant extracts used as growth promoters in broilers. Rev. Bras. Cienc. Avic. [online]. 2008, vol.10, n.2, pp. 109-115. ISSN 1516-635X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-635X2008000200006.
Two experiments were carried out to assess the efficacy of plant extracts as alternatives for antimicrobial growth promoters in broiler diets. The performance experiment included 1,200 male broilers raised from 1 to 42 days of age. The metabolism experiment used 96 male broilers in the grower phase housed in metabolic cages for total excreta collection. At the end of the metabolism experiment, 24 birds were sacrificed to assess organ morphometrics. In both experiments, the following treatments were applied: control diet (CD); CD + 10 ppm avilamycin; CD + 1000 ppm oregano extract; CD + 1000 ppm clove extract; CD + 1000 ppm cinnamon extract; and CD + 1000 ppm red pepper extract. The microencapsulated extracts contained 20% of essential oil. No significant differences (P>0.05) in the studied performance parameters were observed among treatments. The dietary supplementation of the extracts did not influence (P>0.05) nitrogen-corrected apparent metabolizable energy values. In general, organ morphometrics was not affected by the experimental treatments, but birds fed the control diet had higher liver relative weight (P<0.05) as compared to those fed the diet containing red pepper extract, which presented the lowest liver relative weight. These results showed that there was no effect of the tested plant extracts on live performance or in organ morphometrics.
Keywords : Apparent metabolizable energy; broilers; nutrition; growth promoters; plant extracts.