The use of alternative nutritional sources is an important topic for animal production such as poultry. This study examined the effect of replacing soybean meal with sunflower leaf meal in the diet of laying shaver brown pullets. A total of 30 laying birds were assigned to three treatments of 0% (as control group), 10% and 15% MSFLM inclusion. Four eggs per replicate were randomly taken for three consecutive days at two weeks interval for five times, and 18 weeks individuals were selected after 40 days of experimental time. External parameters of the eggs (egg weight, egg length, egg breadth and egg shape index, shell thickness), and body parameters (Final body weight, weight gain), feed intake and hen day production were measured. For egg length, egg breadth and shell thickness showed significant difference (p< 0.05) in from the control birds. Final body weight, weight gain, feed intake and hen day production showed comparable results with values from eggs of birds on control diet. The study revealed the ability of birds to easily utilize the nutrients in the protein sources. MSFLM utilization up to 15% in pullets’ diet revealed no detrimental effect on the performance of the laying birds and the external qualities of eggs produced.
Mexican sunflower; performance; hen day production; egg profile; carcass characteristics