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Effect of Polyherbal Aqueous Extracts (Moringa oleifera, Gum arabic and wild Ganoderma lucidum) in Comparison with Antibiotic on Growth Performance and Haematological Parameters of Broiler Chickens

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Nasarawa State University, Keffi, NIGERIA

Res. J. Recent Sci., Volume 1, Issue (7), Pages 10-18, July,2 (2012)


The search for safe and natural alternative to reduce over-dependence on the use of antibiotic (growth promoters) has led to the evaluation of the effects of polyherbal aqueous extracts from Moringa oleifera, Gum Arabic and wild Ganoderma lucidum on growth performance and haematological parameters of broiler chickens. Eighty (80) day-old Arbor acre broilers were procured from a commercial hatchery and brooded together at the first one week of age on deep litter to acclimatize. At 2 weeks, the chicks were randomly distributed into five groups (8 chicks, each) in duplicate, labeled A-E. All the chicks in all the groups were fed with broiler starter diet containing 22% CP and 2800 Kcal/kg ME from 1 to 4 weeks of age, and broiler finisher containing 20% CP and 2649 Kcal/kg ME was given from 5-8 weeks. Moringa oleifera leaves, Gum Arabic and wild Ganoderma lucidum were collected in Nasarawa and Plateau state for proximate study, mineral and phytochemical analysis. Hot water aqueous extraction (5%, 10% and 20% w/v, each) was carried out and polyherbal mixtures were prepared at equal volume (1:1%w/v ) for oral administration at 2, 4 and 6 weeks, respectively: group A (Moringa + Gum Arabic + wild Ganoderma), B (Moringa + wild Ganoderma), C (Gum Arabic + wild Ganoderma), D (Moringa + Gum Arabic) and E (antibiotic, tetracine). Blood was also taken from each group for haematological analysis. The results of proximate study revealed the presence of appreciable amount of crude protein (17.01%) in Moringa leaves, Gum Arabic (15.38%) and wild Ganodema lucidum (16.79%). They also contained appreciable amounts of carbohydrates, crude fibre and fatty acids. The ash content revealed the presence of minerals: K, Na, Fe, Mn, Zn, P, Mg and Cu. The results of phytochemical analysis and anti-nutrients showed the presence of tannins, phytates, oxalate, saponins, trypsin inhibitors and hydrogen cyanide, with Moringa oleifera leaves having higher levels of the anti-nutrients (tannins). Broilers in group E (7.18kg), D (7.18kg) and B (7.03kg) had higher feed intake. Feed intake and mean weight were significantly different (P<0.05) at 10 and 20% w/v concentration of extract. The cost of feed consumed did not differ significantly (P>0.05). Group E (1.85kg), D (1.75kg) and B (1.73kg) had higher mean weights (gained 1.75kg, 1.65kg and 1.63kg, respectively). Group A had higher feed to gain ratio (4.6), thus low feed conversion efficiency. Carcass and organ weights in all the groups were not significantly affected (P>0.05). Haematological parameters (PCV, Hb, RBC and WBC) were all within the normal range values in all the groups. It was concluded that polyherbal aqueous extracts from Moringa oleifera, Gum Arabic and wild Ganoderma lucidum had no adverse effect on the carcass and organs of broilers.


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