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Abstract

An experiment was conducted to evaluate the feeding value of date pits in broiler chickens. One hundred sixty eight male broiler chicks (Ross 308) from 1 to 42 days of age were used. Experimental design was CRD, in a factorial arrangement of 4 replicates per treatment. The factors included: 3 levels of date pits (10, 20 and 30%) either with or without multi enzyme supplementation. A control diet based on corn and soybean meal was included. All diets were isonitrogenous as well as isoenergetic. Apparent metabolizable energy corrected for zero nitrogen retention and amino acids content of date pits were assessed before formulation of the diets. Cage body weight and feed intake were measured at 10, 28 and 42 days of age. At the end of the experiment, two birds from each cage were selected for either blood plasma samples to be used to measure lipid metabolites and peroxidation parameters. Finally, following over night fasting, birds were slaughtered and carcass characteristics evaluated. Results indicated that live body weight at 10, 28 and 42 days of age, weren’t affected by either the levels of dietary date pits or enzyme addition and neither by the interaction between the two factors (P>0.05). Adding date pits to broiler diet, up to 10% improved feed conversion ratio (FCR) significantly (P<0.05). Increasing the level of date pits to diet, up to 20 and 30% increased FCR about 4.9 and 3.1% respectively (P<0.05). No difference was observed between carcasses’ relative weight of birds fed control vs. dietary treatments (P>0.05). Gizzard percentage in birds fed date pits, was 32% greater than that in the control group (P< 0.01). Feeding date pits decreased blood cholesterol and triglycerides numerically, but this decrease, was not statistically significant. The effect of feeding date pits on blood malondialdehyde and total antioxidant was significant (P< 0.05). Data suggested that including 10% date pits would improve broiler performance. Furthermore adding enzyme to date pits containing diet entails have positive effects.

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