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Neotropical Entomology

versão impressa ISSN 1519-566X

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MENEGUIM, Ana M et al. Bromatological characterization of mulberry cultivars, Morus spp., and determination of nutritional indexes of Bombyx mori L. (Lepidoptera: Bombycidae). Neotrop. entomol. [online]. 2010, vol.39, n.4, pp.506-512. ISSN 1519-566X.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1519-566X2010000400007.

The objective of this work was to assess, through consumption and utilization of natural food measurements, whether mulberry cultivars, Morus spp., could be recommended to rear the silkworm, Bombyx mori L., in a commercial scale. The mulberry cultivars Miura (standard), Korin and Tailandesa and the hybrids FM 3/3, FM 86, SK 1 and SK 4 were tested. Seventy five fifth-instar commercial hybrid larvae were individualized in gerbox® unities and maintained in a rearing room (25 ± 3ºC and 80 ± 10% RH).The mulberry leaves of each of the five cultivars used to feed the silkworm larvae were submitted to bromatological analysis. The dry weight of larvae at the beginning and at the end of the fifth instar, the food consumed and the feces eliminated were recorded to determine the following indexes: relative consumption rate (RCR), relative metabolic rate (RMR), relative growth rate (RGR), approximate digestibility (AD), efficiency of conversion of ingested food (ECI), efficiency of conversion of digested food (ECD), metabolic cost (MC). The bromatological composition analysis of mulberry leaf cultivars revealed that the hybrid SK 4 presented superior nutritional quality compared to the standard cultivar Miura, due to its higher content in crude protein and ethereal extract, and lower detergent fiber content. The hybrid SK 4 was the most adequate food to the silkworm larvae because it was ingested in small amounts, thus providing good digestibility to the larvae, low metabolic cost, good growth rate and one of the highest efficiencies in the conversion of the ingested food and ingested and digested in biomass.

Palavras-chave : Silkworm; quantitative nutrition; nutritional index.

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