Feed intake, digestibility, growth performance, and blood profile of pigs fed mixtures of dried and ground fig (Ficus sur) fruits and graded levels of maize uri icon

abstract

  • This study was conducted to examine the effect of feeding a mixture of different proportions of Ficus sur fruits (FSF) and ground maize grain (MG) on intake, digestibility, growth, and blood profile on Yorkshire pigs. Dietary treatments comprised 100 % FSF and 0 % MG (100FSF), 67 % FSF and 33 % MG (67FSF), 33 % FSF and 67 % MG (33FSF), and 0 % FSF and 100 % MG (0FSF). Noug cake and soybean meal were included to meet nutrient requirement of the animals at isonitrogenous (18 % crude protein (CP)) level with graded levels of energy. Twenty pigs with an average initial weight of 27.75+/-1.4 kg were grouped according to their body weight, and animals from each group were randomly assigned to four dietary treatments. There was no difference (P>0.05) in dry matter, crude protein, and metabolizable energy intakes among the treatments. Organic matter (P<0.05), ether extract (P<0.01), and nitrogen-free extract (NFE) intakes were higher (P<0.0001) for pigs fed with 0FSF than 100FSF. The digestibility of dry matter, crude protein, ether extract, and NFE did not differ (P>0.05) among treatments. However, organic matter digestibility (P<0.05) was highest for pigs in 0FSF than 100FSF. Conversely, crude fiber digestibility was in the reverse trend. No significant differences were observed in body weight gain among treatments (P>0.05). The blood counts and sera metabolites of pigs across the treatments fall within the optimum range. Packed cell volume (PCV) and hemoglobin (Hgb) were higher, but creatinine and cholesterol concentrations were lower in 100FSF than 0FSF indicating better health conditions in pigs fed with FSF. It is, therefore, concluded that feeding FSF has comparable effects with MG on the metabolic performance, growth, and blood profile of pigs.

publication date

  • 2015
  • 2015