Effect of substitution of concentrate mix with Sesbania sesban on feed intake, digestibility, body weight change, and carcass parameters of Arsi-Bale sheep fed a basal diet of native grass hay
An experiment was conducted to assess the effect of substitution of concentrate mix with Sesbania sesban on feed intake, digestibility, average daily gain (ADG), and carcass parameters of Arsi-Bale sheep. The experiment employed 25 male sheep with mean (±standard error) initial body live weight (BLW) of 19.1 ± 0.09 kg. The experiment consisted of 7 days of digestibility and 90 days of feeding trials followed by carcass evaluation. The experiment employed a randomized complete block design with five treatments and five blocks. Treatments comprised of grass hay alone fed ad libitum (GHA; control), GHA + 100 % concentrate mix (CM) consisting of wheat bran and noug seed cake at a ratio of 2:1 (0 S. sesban), GHA + 67 % CM + 33 % S. sesban (33 S. sesban), GHA + 33 % CM + 67 % S. sesban (67 S. sesban), and GHA + 100 % S. sesban (100 S. sesban). Total dry matter intake (DMI) was higher (p < 0.001) for sheep in 0 S. sesban–100 S. sesban (800–821 g/day) compared to sheep in control (611 g/day). However, the effect of S. sesban inclusion (0 S. sesban–100 S. sesban) on total DMI was quadratic, and DMI declined after 67 S. sesban. Digestibility of DM, organic matter (p < 0.01), and crude protein were higher (p < 0.001) in supplemented group compared to the control. ADG, feed conversion efficiency (ADG/DMI), slaughter BLW, hot carcass weight, and total edible offals were higher (p < 0.05–0.001) for sheep in 0 S. sesban–100 S. sesban than those in control. Increased level of S. sesban inclusion, in general, reduced growth and carcass parameters in this study. However, there was no difference between 0 S. sesban and 33 S. sesban in most parameters studied. Thus, it can be concluded that S. sesban could substitute a concentrate when it accounted for up to 33 % of the mix.
KeywordsSesbania sesban Arsi-Bale sheep Feed intake Average daily gain Carcass
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