Physiological response of broiler chickens to neem (Azadirachta indica) and akakapenpen (Rauvolfia vomitoria) decoctions: Performance and carcass characteristics
International Journal of Poultry Science
Department of Animal Science Education, University of Education, Winneba, P.O. Box 40, Mampong-Ashanti, Ghana
A 6-week feeding trial was conducted on One hundred and eighty (180) Cobb broilers to evaluate the effects of Neem (Azadirachta indica) decoction (AID) and Akakapenpen (Rauvolfia vomitoria) decoction (RVD) on body weight gain, carcass and organ characteristics and haematological values of broiler chickens. The leaves of Azadirachta indica and Rauvolfia vomitoria were harvested and dried in the sun until they became crispy but still greenish in coloration. They were washed and then boiled (40 g of chopped leaves in 9L of water). The decoctions were placed in separate sterilized bottles ready for use and were offered ad libitum. The birds were randomly distributed to the treatments with twenty (20) birds per replicate, with each treatment replicated three times in a Completely Randomized Design (CRD). The total replacement of antibiotics and coccidiostat resulted in non-significant depression (p<0.05) in final body weight and weight gain in experimental birds. However, feed intake was slightly affected (p<0.05) by administration of RVD to broilers. There was no significant effect of decoctions on water intake, feed conversion efficiency and mortality. Decoction had no significant influence on the dressing percentage, weights of crop (full), heart, proventriculus (full), intestines (full), feet and head. Decoction however, significantly affected gizzard (both full and empty), crop (empty), liver, kidney and proventriculus (empty). Liver and gizzard weights significantly increased with the inclusion of AID and RVD in water. Apart from WBC and Lymphocytes which were significantly influenced by decoction, the other blood parameters did not show any significant difference. This study suggests that AID and RVD replacement to antibiotics and coccidiostat may have beneficial effects on body weight gain and feed conversion efficiency. Total comparative profit derived from replacing antibiotics + coccidiostat with AID and RVD resulted in economic gains. © Asian Network for Scientific Information, 2011.
Aves; Azadirachta indica; Gallus gallus; Rauvolfia; Rauvolfia vomitoria