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Effect of varying dietary energy to protein ratio in creep feed on feed intake, growth performance and nutrient digestibility of pre-weaning Boer goats
1Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Universiti Malaysia Kelantan, Kota Bharu, Kelantan, Malaysia
2Animal Nutrition, Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
3Strategic Livestock Research Centre, Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
*Email Address : [email protected]
Abstract : This study was conducted to investigate the effect of dietary energy-to-protein ratios in the creep feed on feed intake, growth performance and nutrient digestibility of Boer kids before weaning. Twenty-four Boer kids, one months of age which were randomly divided into four treatment groups, with each group consisting of three males and three females. The animals were fed formulated creep feeds with varying metabolizable energy (ME) (MJ/kg DM) and crude protein (CP) contents as follows: 10 MJ ME/kg to 17% CP (Group 1, control), 10 MJ ME/kg to 18% CP (Group 2), 10 MJ ME/kg to 18% CP (Group 3) and 12 MJ ME/kg to 22% CP (Group 4). Throughout 67 days of the trial period, feed intake was found to be more in Group 3 (P < 0.05) compared to other groups. Dry matter intake (DMI) reduced in Group 4 when energy-to-protein ratio was increased. No significant difference (P > 0.05) were observed in live weight gain (LWG), body measurements and body condition score (BCS) between treatments. LWG for Groups 2 and 3 were found to be higher than the other groups. The feed conversion ratio (FCR) for Groups 1, 2, 3 and 4 were 2.21: 1, 2.50: 1, 3.57: 1 and 4.65: 1, respectively. Significant difference (P < 0.05) was only observed in digestibility of crude protein where Group 4 had the highest percentage of CP digestibility, however, was not translated into better BW gain in the animals of this group. The results from this study suggested that dietary formulation that contained 10 MJ ME/kg to 17% CP was sufficient to Boer goat kids at the pre-weaning stage based on LWG, body measurement, BCS and FCR.
Keywords : Boer goats,Creep feed,Pre-weaning,Feed intake,Growth Performance,Nutrient Digestibility