ArticlePDF Available

Effects of Adding Different Levels of Hydroponic Barley Fodder on the Productive Performance and Economic Value of Broiler Chickens

Authors:

Abstract

The present study was conducted to disclose the impact of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) on some productive features of the economic value of broilers chickens. One hundred forty-four one-day-old Ross 308 chicks were used in this study. Birds were randomly distributed into four treatments, with three replicates per each treatment (12 birds per replicate): The first treatment had no addition (T1:control). As for T2 and T3 treatments, 10% and 20% of HBF were added to the feed pellet. In T4, fresh HBF was chopped and fed as an additional free fodder. Results reflected an increase in the weekly live body weight (BW), body weight gain (BWG), feed intake (FI), and feed conversion ratio (FCR) of T2 birds; along with an improvement in the cumulative BWG, FI, and FCR of T2 and T4 during the 3rd to 5th weeks compared with the other treatments. Bacteriology and gut morphology demonstrated a decrease in total fungi, bacteria, and E. coli count with an increase in Lactobacillus count, in conjunction with an increase in the villus height and crypt depth of the jejunum of T2 birds. Economic value measures showed an increase in the production index and economic marker for broilers treated with T2 and T4. It can be concluded that there is an opportunity to include HBF by 10% or present it as freshly chopped HBF to ameliorate production performance, improve economic indicators and reduce broiler production costs by 9%. Keywords: Hydroponic, Barley fodder, Broiler, Productive, Economic value
Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864 Copyright © 2022 by
Razi Vaccine & Serum Research Institute
DOI: 10.22092/ARI.2022.358131.2157
1. Introduction
Poultry is considered the main source of animal
protein, besides its high efficiency in converting non-
human compounds into valuable foodstuff of high
nutritional value. Due to high feed prices, broiler
chicken production in Iraq (156.5 thousand tons
annually) does not meet the local consumption needs
(1). Thus, the country depends on importing large
quantities of poultry products, which costs massive
amounts of money. To cope with feedstuff limitations,
hydroponic production is considered a promising feed.
Hence its characterized by low production cost and
high economic value (2). Due to its high nutritional
value, barley is the most used seed in hydroponic
fodder production (3). Hydroponic barley fodder (HBF)
is utilized for supplying fresh and high-nutrient green
forage at all times without the need for large areas of
arable lands and reducing the quantities of irrigation
water (4). Due to the exposure to moisture during the
soaking and cultivating of HBF, enzyme activity
increases inside the grain, which breaks down starch
and protein into simple and easy for digestion and
absorption. Also, in germination, protein and mineral
content increased, vitamin B doubled 3-12 times,
vitamin A doubled 3 times, and vitamin C created a
high proportion (5).
Original Article
Effects of Adding Different Levels of Hydroponic Barley
Fodder on the Productive Performance and Economic Value
of Broiler Chickens
Al-Kanaan, A. J. J1 *
1. Department of Animal Production, College of Agriculture, University of Basrah, Basrah, Iraq
Received 14 March 2022; Accepted 23 May 2022
Corresponding Author: adnan.jaddoa@uobasrah.edu.iq
Abstract
The present study was conducted to disclose the impact of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder
(HBF) on some productive features of the economic value of broilers chickens. One hundred forty-four one-
day-old Ross 308 chicks were used in this study. Birds were randomly distributed into four treatments, with
three replicates per each treatment (12 birds per replicate): The first treatment had no addition (T1:control). As
for T2 and T3 treatments, 10% and 20% of HBF were added to the feed pellet. In T4, fresh HBF was chopped
and fed as an additional free fodder. Results reflected an increase in the weekly live body weight (BW), body
weight gain (BWG), feed intake (FI), and feed conversion ratio (FCR) of T2 birds; along with an improvement
in the cumulative BWG, FI, and FCR of T2 and T4 during the 3rd to 5th weeks compared with the other
treatments. Bacteriology and gut morphology demonstrated a decrease in total fungi, bacteria, and E. coli count
with an increase in Lactobacillus count, in conjunction with an increase in the villus height and crypt depth of
the jejunum of T2 birds. Economic value measures showed an increase in the production index and economic
marker for broilers treated with T2 and T4. It can be concluded that there is an opportunity to include HBF by
10% or present it as freshly chopped HBF to ameliorate production performance, improve economic indicators
and reduce broiler production costs by 9%.
Keywords: Hydroponic, Barley fodder, Broiler, Productive, Economic value
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1854
In addition to reducing total production cost, it is well
documented that green barley fodder has potential
benefits for production (5) and reproduction
performance in dairy cattle (6) and buffaloes (7), as
well as enhancing productive parameters and beef
quality (3). Researchers indicate that HBF extensively
utilizes growth performance (8) and milk yield and
composition (9) in sheep. Furthermore, HBF improves
rabbits' productive and reproductive features (10). In
poultry, using HBF reduced the cost of egg production
by 62-64% compared with concentrate feed of laying
hens (11); also, it contributes to enhancing growth
parameters (12) and egg production (13) of quails.
Feeding HBF up to 40% in ducklings improves
productivity parameters, digestibility coefficients, and
nutritive values (14). Furthermore, feeding 15-20%
HBF increases productivity and meat performance and
improves metabolism and broilers' vitamins (15).
Unlike ruminants, Jacob and Pescatore (16) published
that growing poultry fed barley-based diets negatively
influences the digestive tract, which reflects on
productive performance. Those authors mentioned that
the antagonistic impact of barley on digestion and
absorption is due to the presence of non-starch
polysaccharides (mainly β-glucans), which is the main
reason for increasing intestine viscosity and altered gut
morphology and microflora, besides reducing the
availability of nutrients. Although β-glucans from
yeast, fungi, and some cereals enhance avian, and many
different animals' immune system, high-level inclusion
of barley has adverse effects on poultry performance
(17, 18).
Although numerous reports study the impacts of HBF
on animal performance, the main limitation of the
experimental results is that most of these studies
focused on ruminants while neglecting the advantages
of feeding HBF to poultry. In Iraq and the other arid
and semi-arid ecosystem regions, water scarcity and
availability of cultivable lands are the most important
restrictions to the agricultural sector due to climatic
changes. Even though the use of HBF in feeding
animals is very limited in Iraq and has not reached
commercial feeding, most animal breeders are not even
aware of this technique. Despite all efforts, only a few
scientific studies are carried out in Iraq regarding this
subject (e.g. (19-23). Hence, this study investigated the
impact of adding HBF to feed on the productive
performance, microbial and morphological intestine,
and economic value in broilers chickens.
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Birds Management
This study was conducted at the Poultry Farm and
laboratories of the College of Agriculture, Basrah
University, from 26/12/2019 to 17/02/2020. The
current study used one hundred forty-four one-day-old
unsexed broiler chicks (Ross 308 strain) with an
average initial weight of 41.5 g. Birds were randomly
distributed into 4 treatments with 3 replications for
each group (12 birds in each replication). The rearing
house system is a wire floor (birds placed on a wire-net
floor, 1 m above the concrete ground), supplied with
automatic feeding, water, and ventilation equipment.
Open cover metal cages (2×1.5× 0.6 meters used for 12
birds) were utilized for separating replications. All
chicks were reared under conformable management
and environmental conditions (temperature, ventilation,
water, heating, lighting, nutrition, vaccination, and
monitoring performance) in accordance with Aviagen
(24) recommendations for Ross 308 broilers during the
study period of 35 days.
2.2. Preparations of Hydroponic Fodder
Seeds were Iraqi barley (Hordeum Vulgare L.)
obtained from the local market of Basrah city, Iraq.
For cultivation, a simple hydroponic system was
designed in a 3×5×3 meters room, equipped with
metal stands, shelves, and semi-automatic irrigation,
lighting, cooling, and ventilation systems. Before use,
seeds were subjected to a germination test (81.7%),
while the preparation for cultivating HBF took one
week before the feeding experiment. After cleaning
grains from impurities, barley was sterilized by
soaking for 30 min in a 20% sodium hypochlorite to
control mold formation. Then, the seeds were washed
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1855
and soaked in water for 12 h. Later, seeds were sown
in 40×60 cm polystyrene planting trays containing
holes to facilitate drainage. Grains were irrigated with
a tap of water (without any nutrients) 4 times a day
and 24 h lighting daily till the harvesting date on the
7th day. Temperature (24±2 ºC) and relative humidity
(60-80%) were maintained at approximately constant
ranges inside the hydroponic system. The chemical
composition of HBF and the original barley seeds
were determined according to the standard procedures
of AOAC (25).
2.3. Treatments and Composition of Diets
The whole fresh HBF (root and grass) is cut into
small pieces (1-2 cm) before addition to the birds' diets.
The chopped barley fodder mixed well with the
commercial broiler feed on two levels. A small poultry
feed pellet machine was used to convert the mixture
into broilers pellet feed. Birds were fed the basal diet
formulated to meet the nutrient requirements of broiler
chickens according to NRC (26) and allowed free
access to water and feed. Four dietary treatments were
used in this investigation; the control treatment (T1) fed
the commercial pelleted diet. Birds in the second (T2)
and third (T3) treatments were fed the commercial diet
with 10% and 20% HBF, respectively. The two levels
of HBF were added to the complete commercial diet
and compressed within the pellet feed. In the fourth
treatment (T4), birds were fed the commercial broiler
diet with fresh chopped HBF, which was provided
twice daily, separately from the concentrate feed. T4
birds had free access to the fresh barley fodder (placed
outside) by small slots in the cage. Ingredients and
chemical composition of diet used in the experiment for
starter (1-21 days of age) containing 23.33% crude
protein and 2873 metabolizable energy (kcal.kg-1) and
finisher (22-35 days of age) periods containing crude
protein 20.24% and 3119 metabolizable energy
(kcal.kg-1) are shown in table 1.
Table 1. Ingredients and chemical composition of diets used in the experiment for starter (1-21 days) and finisher (22-35 days) periods
Ingredients
Starter (1-21 days)
Finisher (22-35 days)
T1
Control
T2
10 %
HBF1
T3
20 %
HBF
T4
fresh
HBF
T1
Control
T2
10 %
HBF
T3
20 %
HBF
T4
fresh
HBF
Yellow corn
45
40.5
36
45
51.5
46.35
41.2
51.5
Soybean meal
32
28.8
25.6
32
23
20.7
18.4
23
Wheat
15
13.5
12
15
15
13.5
12
15
Concentrate protein (44%)2
4
3.6
3.2
4
4
3.6
3.2
4
Premix (29%)
1
0.9
0.8
1
1
0.9
0.8
1
Calcium carbonate
2
1.8
1.6
2
2
1.8
1.6
2
Sodium chloride
0.5
0.45
0.4
0.5
0.5
0.45
0.4
0.5
Vegetable oil
0.5
0.45
0.4
0.5
3
2.7
2.4
3
Barley fodder
-
10
20
Free
-
10
20
Free
Chemical composition3
Crude protein (%)
23
22.2
21.4
23
19.3
18.87
18.44
19.3
Metabolic energy (kcal/kg)
2940
3006
3072
2940
3170
3213
3256
3170
1 HBF= Hydroponic barley fodder, the additional HBF was compressed within the pellet feed in levels of 10% and 20%, or fresh
chopped HBF free of choice.2 Protein concentrate used from Al-Hayat Company-Jordan, providing (per kg of diet): 44% protein, 2800
kcal/kg, ME, 12% fat, 25% ash, 5% calcium, 2.9% phosphorus, 2.55% methionine + Cysteine, 2.8% lysine. 3 Calculated according to the
chemical composition of feedstuff by NRC (26)
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1856
2.4. Production Performance and Economic Value
Live body weight (BW; gram) was recorded weekly
for each replicate using a digital-sensitive balance.
Body weight gain (BWG; g) was calculated weekly
based on the difference between every two weeks in
BW. Feed was provided, and the feed residual was
recorded weekly for each replicate, where the
difference was used to calculate the feed intake (FI; g).
Feed conversion ratio (FCR; g feed to g gain) was
calculated weekly using data of weekly FI per BWG.
Cumulative (1-5 weeks) BWG, FI, and FCR were
calculated for the whole feeding period (35 days).
Mortality was recorded daily for all replicates, where
the activity ratio was calculated as:
Activity ratio = 100 - mortality ratio.
Productive index and economic marker calculated
according to Martins, Carvalho (27) as follow:
Productive index= BW × activity ratio/ FCR ×
feeding period (35 days) × 10
Economic marker= Total BW for selling birds× 1000/
number of birds × rearing period (days) × FCR.
2.5. Morphology of Intestine
At the end of the experiment (day 35), two birds from
each replicate were slaughtered and used for an
intestinal morphological determination, as mentioned
by Naderinejad, Zaefarian (28). In brief, a section from
the jejunum was flushed with cold saline and put in
10% formalin solution, and after 72 h, moved to 70%
ethanol for fixation. The samples were dehydrated
through graded alcohol and isopropyl alcohol,
impregnated with Histosec pastilles and embedded in
wax, and cut using a rotary Microtome. Alcian blue and
hematoxylin-eosin were used for staining the slides and
examined by light microscopy. Two variables were
measured: villus height (the distance from the top of the
villus to the junction between the villus and crypt) and
crypt depth (the distance from the junction to the
bottom of the crypt). The villus: crypt ratio was
calculated by dividing villus height by crypt depth.
2.6. Microbiology of Intestine
3M petrifilm plates were used for estimating total
bacterial count (aerobic bacteria), total coliforms bacteria
(Escherichia coli), lactic acid bacteria (Lactobacilli), and
total fungi count in the jejunum. According to the method
described by Blackburn and McCarthy (29), swab
samples of jejunum contents were collected, and the tubes
were transferred to the microbial population lab. After
dilutions, samples were incubated using 3M Petrifilm
plates. Then, 1 ml of dilution is prepared for the
implanting and transferred by micro-pipette to the 3M
Petrifilm slowly. The incubation of the plates was at 37°C
for 24 h for bacteria and 48-72 h for fungi.
2.7. Statistical Analysis
The data were statistically analyzed with a one-way
variance ANOVA according to CRD design using the
SPSS program (30). Duncan's multiple range tests (31)
were used to compare means wherever significant
differences were at P≤0.01 and P≤0.05.
3. Results and Discussion
3.1. Chemical Composition of HBF and Barley
Grains
Results in table 2 refer to the chemical composition of the
original barley grains and the 7 days of germinated HBF. It
is clear from the table that CP% and ash% (19.17% and
5.09%, respectively) were duplicated in HBF compared
with the original barley grains (9.92% and 2.78%,
respectively), while the main decline (in addition to DM%)
presented in values of nitrogen-free extract (NFE) (80.66%
in grains and 66.13 in HBF). These changes in HBF
components may be due to the increases in nutrients, which
reflect the loss of DM mainly in the form of carbohydrates
(NFE) due to barley grains' respiration during sprouting
(16). Furthermore, the sprouting of grains enhances
modifying the level of enzyme activity in the seeds,
increasing total protein, fat, vitamins, and minerals (5, 8).
Also, Alshamiry (32) claimed an increase in CP%, EE%,
and ash% (14.67, 3.86, and 4.11 %, respectively) of 8 days
HBF compared with the original barley grain (11.73, 1.9,
and 2.81 % respectively), with decreasing in OM% and
ME% in HBF. Results in this study were nearly similar to
other studies, which demonstrated that barley sprouted is
higher in CP%, CF%, and ash% compared with barley
grain (14, 33, 34).
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1857
3.2. Live Body Weight (BW)
The influence of adding different levels of HBF to the
diet of broilers on the weekly average BW is shown in
table 3. During the first two weeks of feeding, results
did not show a significant effect of adding different
levels of HBF on the live BW of broilers. Generally,
birds fed with 10% and 20% HBF distinguished with
the highest and lowest BW throughout the 3rd-5th weeks
of feeding. In the last week of feeding HBF, significant
differences appear among all treatments, where T2 is
characterized by the highest BW (1922.40 g), and T3
reached the lowest value (1816.70 g). The increase in
BW of T2 may be attributed to the fact that broilers
obtained the optimum inclusion level of HBF, which
contains many biologically active compounds that have
an influential role in raising the nutritive value of the
feed (35). The high nutritional value of HBF is related
to the conversion of complex compounds, reducing
antinutritional, and increasing minerals and vitamins in
the seeds throughout sprouting (16). Also, during the
germination of cereal grains, the amino acid profile
alters, resulting in highly digestible feed (36). It seems
that birds in T4 get utilized from consumption of the
high nutrient value of the chopped HBF as an
additional fresh feed to get higher body weight
compared with T1 and T3 treatments. At the same time,
increasing the proportion of HBF in the diet of T3
perhaps leads to a decline in nutrient availability by
increasing the level of indigestible fibers (6), which in
turn caused decreasing the BW. The results of this
study are comparable to that of Talalay, Matserushka
(15), who reported that adding hydroponic barley in an
amount of 15-20% contributed to an increase in BW by
improving carcass characteristics and blood profile in
broilers. This increase in BW was 15-17% higher than
the control at the 5th week and rose to 18% at the 8th
week of feeding on HBF (37).
3.3. Body Weight Gain (BWG)
The impact of adding different levels of HBF on average
BWG and cumulative BWG is summarized in table 4.
Incorporating HBF into broilers' diets has positive effects
on the weekly BWG starting from the 3rd week. During
the 3rd, 4th, and 5th weeks of feeding, T2 characteristics
with higher BWG (434.84, 466.36, and 500.90 g,
respectively) compared to other treatments, where no
significant differences appear between T4, T1, and T3.
This order pattern of findings in BWG is clearer in
considering the cumulative BWG, as the highest
cumulative body weight gain was for T2 (1880 g),
followed by T4 (1819 g), and T1 (1793 g), while the
lowest value was for T3 (1775 g). This improvement in
weekly BWG and the cumulative BWG in treatment fed
with 10% HBF may be indicated that those birds get used
to the high nutritive value of HBF in its proper level of
pellet diet to ameliorate production performance (14). Al-
Kaisey, Mohammad (23) found that supplementing 60-
100% of yellow corn with sprouted barley did not
negatively affect the BWG of broilers at 35 days. Another
reason for improving productive parameters in T2 and T4
is that supplementing sprouted grains reduces oxidative
stress and improves immune responses in broiler chickens
(38). Additionally, the high rate of BWG is associated
with an improvement in the digestibility of nutrients of the
ileal contents in broilers-fed diets based on high-moisture
barley (39). Subsequently, replacing barley with 33%
germinated barley increased body weight gain compared
to those fed a normal or enzyme-barley diet at 742 days
of broiler's age (33).
Table 2. Nutrients composition of the original barley grains and the hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) at day 7 of germination
Feedstuff
DM%
Ash%
OM%
% DM basis
CP
CF
EE
NFE
Barley grains
89.12
2.78
97.22
9.92
4.45
2.19
80.66
HBF
12.64
5.09
94.91
19.17
6.26
3.35
66.13
HBF: hydroponic barley fodder; DM: dry matter; OM: organic matter; CP: crude protein; EE: ether extract; CF: crude fiber; NFE:
nitrogen-free extract
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1858
3.4. Feed Intake (FI)
The effect of adding different levels of HBF to the
diet on the average weekly FI (g) and cumulative FI (g)
of broilers are presented in table 5. During the first two
weeks, no significant differences appear between the
treatments. While, the results revealed that throughout
the 3rd-5th weeks of feeding, there was a significant
decrease (P≤0.05) in the average weekly FI of T3
(652.50, 793.17, and 1119.04 g, respectively) and T2
birds (618.16, 754.69 and 1015.05 g respectively)
compared to the other treatments, and T4 was
registered with the lowest FI (603.92, 751.33 and
995.37 g respectively). Generally, the significant effect
of adding different levels of HBF in BW (Tab. 3) and
FI (Tab. 5) was more pronounced in the 5th week of the
experiment, which reflects the development of the gut
ability for digestion and absorption (10). The data on
the cumulative feed consequently showed highly
significant differences between the treatments, as the
highest cumulative FI was for T3 birds (3103 g),
followed by T1 (3019 g) and T2 (2908 g), while T4
birds recorded the lowest cumulative FI (2865 g). It
seems that the high palatability of HBF let birds of T3
treatment consume a high amount of the fresh chopped
fodder (which is given as a free additional choice),
which in turn, led to a decline in feed intake of
concentrate feed compared to other treatments. In this
scientific context, T2 birds may be utilized from the
high nutritive value of HBF to reach their feeding
requirements and get efficient eating by decreasing feed
intake to the same level as T3 birds.
On the contrary, the high percentage of indigestible
and unabsorbable substances in the diets of T4 may
lead birds to consume an extra amount of feed to
compensate for the imbalance in the composition of
their diets (22). Studies indicated that the inclusion of
50 g hydroponic maize fodder reduced the mean
cumulative feed intake from 3624 to 3321 g in broilers
(40). In contrast, an investigation by Dastar, Sabet
Moghaddam (33) has suggested that replacing barley
Table 3. Effect of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) to the diet of broilers on the weekly average body weight
(g) (mean ± standard error)
Dietary
treatments
Age in weeks
1st week
2nd week
3rd week
4th week
5th week
T1
182.77±2.83
530.37±4.01
914.53±5.18b
1364.97±4.19ab
1835.17±6.02c
T2
173.9±3.73
520.3±4.39
955.14±4.92a
1421.50±5.25a
1922.40±4.62a
T3
176.13±2.47
515.1±6.02
912.73±3.97b
1338.73±5.51b
1816.70±4.57d
T4
177.2±4.93
523.97±5.12
926.07±4.77b
1380.37±4.56ab
1860.73±3.88b
P-value
0.409
0.247
0.001
0.000
0.000
T1: control; T2: 10% HBF; T3: 20% HBF and T4: free fresh HBF. abcd = Mean values with different superscripts within the same column
differ significantly (P≤0.05)
Table 4. Effect of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) to the diet of broilers on the weekly average body weight
gain (g) and cumulate body weight gain (g) (mean ± standard error)
Dietary treatments
Age in weeks
Cumulative
weight gain
1st week
2nd week
3rd week
4th week
5th week
T1
140.77±2.83
347.6±3.59
384.17±1.19b
450.43±9.36ab
470.20±1.21b
1793.167±6.02d
T2
131.9±3.73
346.4±6.92
434.84±7.85a
466.36±8.95a
500.90±0.70a
1880.40±4.62a
T3
134.13±2.47
338.97±7.64
397.63±5.99b
426.00±9.48b
477.97±1.03b
1774.70±4.57c
T4
135.2±4.93
346.77±8.64
402.10±5.85b
454.30±4.60ab
480.37±5.23b
1818.73±3.88b
P-value
0.409
0.803
0.012
0.049
0.028
0.000
T1: control; T2: 10% HBF; T3: 20% HBF and T4: free fresh HBF. ab = Mean values with different superscripts within the same column
differ significantly (P≤0.05)
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1859
grain with 33%-66% germinated barley increased feed
intake in broiler chickens. Whereas (41) did not find a
significant effect for adding 10 and 20 g/ bird green
fodder on the feed consumption in slow-growing
chicken.
3.5. Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR)
Table 6 displays the effect of adding different levels
of HBF to the diet of broilers on the weekly FCR and
the cumulative FCR. Average weekly FCR showed
significant differences as affected by adding different
levels of HBF starting from the 3rd week of broiler
feeding. During the 3rd, then 4th, and the 5th weeks of
feeding, T2 (1.422, 1.618, and 2.026 g/g, respectively)
and T4 (1.504, 1.655, and 2.072 g/g, respectively) birds
showed a significant improvement in FCR compared to
birds of T1 (1.657, 1.726 and 2.284 g/g respectively)
and T3 (1.643, 1.863 and 2.341 g/g respectively). The
improvement confirmed these results in the average
accumulative FCR in T2 and T4 birds (1.446 and 1.470
g feed/ g gain, respectively) compared to birds of T1
and T3 treatments (1.564 and 1.620 g feed/ g gain,
respectively). The improvement in FCR of T2 and T4
demonstrates the appropriate conditions for these birds
to express their high capability in digestion and
absorption and then their efficiency in converting the
limited amount of feed into an increase in weight (14).
Moreover, during seed germination, aflatoxin and some
anti-neutral factors disappear from the sprouted seedling,
whereas the presence of these toxic substances in the
cereals consisting of the feed has an accumulative
adverse influence on broilers' immunity and health
which is reflected afterward in the animal performance
(42). The relationship between the improvement of
immunity and productive parameters reflects more
metabolic activity, which is highly attributed to the
enhancement of blood measurements (43). These results
are in accordance with the findings of (40), who
indicated that the inclusion of 25% hydroponic fodder
reduced the cumulative FCR values from 1.74 to 1.60
g/g in the 6th week of feeding the broilers.
Table 5. Effect of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) to the diet of broilers on the weekly average feed intake (g)
and cumulate feed intake (g) (mean ± standard error)
Dietary treatments
Age in weeks
Cumulative
feed intake
1st week
2nd week
3rd week
4th week
5th week
T1
146.66±2.43a
385.86±3.93a
636.78±5.14ab
776.58±5.49
1073.34±8.67b
3019.23±25.65a
T2
139.94±1.08b
380.61±2.28ab
618.16±4.76bc
754.69±29.03
1015.05±14.48c
2908.46±37.75b
T3
147.25±1.91a
391.28±3.63a
652.50±6.72a
793.17±13.63
1119.04±6.81a
3103.23±21.58a
T4
140.14±1.27b
373.83±2.92b
603.92±8.00c
751.33±9.97
995.37±14.04c
2864.61±22.67b
P-value
0.028
0.027
0.003
0.330
0.000
0.001
T1: control; T2: 10% HBF; T3: 20% HBF and T4: free fresh HBF. abc = Mean values with different superscripts within the same column
differ significantly (P≤0.05)
Table 6. Effect of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) to the diet of broilers on the weekly average feed
conversion ratio (g feed/g gain) and cumulative feed conversion ratio (g feed/g gain) (mean ± standard error)
Dietary treatments
Age in weeks
Cumulative feed
conversion ratio
1st week
2nd week
3rd week
4th week
5th week
T1
1.042±0.004
1.110±0.017
1.657±0.010a
1.726±0.043ab
2.284±0.041a
1.564±0.010b
T2
1.063±0.038
1.100±0.027
1.422±0.018b
1.618±0.050c
2.026±0.031b
1.446±0.020c
T3
1.098±0.006
1.156±0.032
1.643±0.053a
1.863±0.044a
2.341±0.016a
1.620±0.009a
T4
1.040±0.045
1.079±0.032
1.504±0.051b
1.655±0.039b
2.072±0.022b
1.470±0.016c
P-value
0.521
0.322
0.006
0.019
0.000
0.000
T1: control; T2: 10% HBF; T3: 20% HBF and T4: free fresh HBF. abc = Mean values with different superscripts within the same column
differ significantly (P≤0.05)
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1860
3.6. Microbial Population and Morphology of the
Jejunum
Table 7 represents the effect of adding different levels
of HBF on the microbial population and morphology of
the jejunum. At 35 day-olds, broilers showed a
significant decrease in total fungi count, total bacterial
count, and Escherichia coli bacteria in birds fed 10%
HBF, in conjunction with increasing of beneficial
bacteria (Lactobacillus) as compared with the presence
in the jejunum of other treatment birds. These results
are along with Shaheed (44) findings, which observed a
decrease in the number of harmful E. coli bacteria and
an increase in the number of beneficial aerobic bacteria
in the jejunum of broilers fed 10 and 20% germinated
date kernel powder. The destructive effect of intestinal
fungi products (mycotoxins) could impair the immunity
system and induce inflammation, concomitantly, more
energy appropriate for maintenance and recovery from
disease. This could lead to reduced feed consumption
and utilization of nutrients and a decline in production
performance in broilers (45).
Morphology of the intestine showed a significant
increase in the villus height and crypt depth of jejunum
in T2 birds compared to other treatments, whereas the
control group had the lowest values of these traits
(Table 7). On the other hand, we noticed that the villus:
crypt ratio is not significantly different. These results
concur with other studies which have shown a
morphological modification in the intestine
morphometry as affected by the inclusion of different
diets in growing broilers (16) and quail (46). Yamauchi
(47) suggests that the nutritional value of diets
produced a microscopic alteration in intestinal
morphology, which differ relative to feed intake, body
weight, and rapid growth rate. Such an explanation
could illustrate the answer to the following question:
Why do birds feed on the appropriate amount of HBF
to improve production characteristics and develop
morphological and bacteriological parameters?
Morphology of the gastrointestinal tract is directly
associated with the existence of the detrimental
microflora, as many bacteria and fungi strain
distinguished to have a destruction alteration on villus
height and crypt depth and their ratio in the jejunum,
duodenum, and ileum of poultry (17).
Based on the results shown in the current approach, the
improvement in productive performance perhaps not
only be caused by the high nutritional value of HBF.
However, it appears that the harmful microorganisms are
reduced by HBF by increasing the beneficial bacteria,
which is visible in the enlargement of villus height and
crypt depth in broilers' intestines. This enhancement in
morphological traits develops the ability of absorption
and nutrient utilization in the intestine. Furthermore,
improving the beneficial microbial count impairs the
antagonistic toxic and pathogens microbial, leading to
more energy orientation for growth and improving
productive traits (45).
3.7. Economic Value
Mortality ratio, production index, and economic
marker as affected by adding different levels of HBF are
depicted in table 8. Mortality was recorded as 0.08, 0.00,
0.08, and 0.03 for T1, T2, T3, and T4, respectively. In
agreement with Perera, Abdollahi (48), the mortality
observed in the recent study was negligible (only 7 out
of the 144 birds died), and the death was not linked to
any experimental treatments. Birds in T2 treatment
showed the highest (P0.001) production index
(380.01), followed by T4 (361.62) and T1 (334.99),
where T3 resulted in the lowest (320.09) production
index. Also, the economic marker of broilers showed the
same results context of the production index.
Meanwhile, the statistical analysis of economic value
ordered T2 (379.31) in the first order of the study
treatments, followed by T4 (361.06) and T1 (334.65),
whereas T3 got the lowest economic marker (319.77).
In T2 and T4 treatments, the low mortality rate and the
improvement in the economic value indicators may
contribute to the barley cultivars enhancing blood
parameters which help in better immunity performance
(49). This study's economic value results are
compatible with the findings of Ali, Miah (50), who
stated that feeding HBF up to 15% causes a reduction
in feed cost and total production cost in turkey poults.
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1861
Cultivating barley grains to produce HBF was easy,
simple, and inexpensive and required little equipment
or devices. By the end of the 7 days of germination
only with water, the HBF looks like a 19-22 cm mat in
height. The results of this study indicate that each 1 kg
of barley grain produced 8.7 kg of HBF (including the
sprouted grains embedded in their white roots and
green shoots). After calculating the costs according to
Iraqi market prices, it becomes clear that the cost of
producing 1 ton of HBF is about 100,000 Iraqi Dinars
(about 68.5 US$). Thus, the price of the broilers diet
with 10% HBF will decline from 1000 to 910 ID. In
other words, using HBF by 10% in broiler diets has led
to a 9% reduction in broiler production costs. Atturi,
Chakravarthy (40) stated that the inclusion of 25%
hydroponic maize fodder reduced feed cost by 0.139 $
per broiler chicken. Researchers found that the optimal
inclusion of HBF for the best performance was 23% of
dry matter intake, which reduced 63% of the broiler's
production cost (34). In geese, the optimum dosage of
hydroponic green herbage was 25-30% of the diet,
which reduced the cost of feeding by 30% (5).
Regardless first two weeks, it can be concluded that
adding 10% HBF along with presenting it as a fresh
hydroponic chopped barely led to improves productive
performance, microbial population and morphology of
intestine, and the economic value indicators with a
reduction of the broilers production costs by 9% during
feeding up to 5 weeks. Moreover, using locally barley
seeds and low-cost equipment has the potential to
develop the technical and economic sustaining of this
technique in competition to find effective and cheap
alternative poultry feed.
Authors' Contribution
Study concept and design: A. J. J. A.
Acquisition of data: A. J. J. A.
Analysis and interpretation of data: A. J. J. A.
Drafting of the manuscript: A. J. J. A.
Critical revision of the manuscript for important
intellectual content: A. J. J. A.
Table 7. Effect of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) to the diet on the microbial population, villus height, crypt
depth and villus to crypt ratio of the jejunum of 35-day-old broilers (mean ± standard error)
Traits
Dietary treatments
P-value
T1
T2
T3
T4
Total fungi count (×103)
5.23±0.064a
4.424±0.086b
4.989±0.168a
4.517±0.109b
0.003
Total bacterial count (×103)
5.416±0.078a
4.629±0.133c
5.083±0.155ab
4.775±0.064bc
0.005
Lactic acid bacteria (×103)
4.359±0.099b
4.863±0.082a
4.665±0.088a
4.819±0.092a
0.017
Escherichia coli (×103)
4.326±0.124a
3.615±0.063c
3.954±0.032b
3.908±0.115b
0.004
Villus height (μm)
573.24±8.34c
656.41±7.12a
592.59±6.48bc
607.23±8.92b
0.000
Crypt depth (μm)
76.03±3.17b
97.33±7.47a
86.53±3.58ab
91.57±2.53ab
0.047
Villus : crypt ratio
7.56±0.21
6.84±0.61
6.87±0.21
6.64±0.09
0.314
T1: control; T2: 10% HBF; T3: 20% HBF and T4: free fresh HBF. abc = Mean values with different superscripts within the same column
differ significantly (P≤0.05)
Table 8. Effects of adding different levels of hydroponic barley fodder (HBF) to the diet of broilers on the mortality ratio, production
index and economic marker at day 35 (mean ± standard error)
Traits
Dietary treatments
P-value
T1
T2
T3
T4
Mortality (%)
0.08±0.05
0.00±0.00
0.08±0.00
0.03±0.03
0.161
Production index
334.99±2.39c
380.01±5.21a
320.09±1.77d
361.62±4.13b
0.000
Economic marker
334.65±2.22c
379.31±5.20a
319.77±1.77d
361.06±4.15b
0.000
T1: control; T2: 10% HBF; T3: 20% HBF and T4: free fresh HBF. abcd = Mean values with different superscripts within the same row
differ significantly (P≤0.05)
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1862
Statistical analysis: A. J. J. A.
Administrative, technical, and material support: A. J. J.
A.
Ethics
This study was approved by the Ethics Committee of
the University of Basrah, Basrah, Iraq.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of
interest.
Grant Support
This experiment did not receive any specific grant
from funding agencies in the public or commercial
sectors.
Acknowledgment
The author gratefully thanks the staff of Poultry Farm,
College of Agriculture, Basrah University (Dr. Alfred
S. Karomy and Dr. Qutaiba J. Gheni) for their
assistance in carrying out this study.
References
1. CSO. Central Statistical Organization, Poultry
Report Year 2020. Ministry of Planning- Agricultural
Statistics Directorate, Baghdad-Iraq 2021.
2. Ndaru PH, Huda AN, Marjuki, Prasetyo R,
Shofiatun U, Nuningtyas YF, et al., editors. Providing high
quality forages with hydroponic fodder system. The 4th
Animal Production International Seminar IOP Conf Series:
Earth and Environmental Science Earth and Environmental
Science .2020.
3. Antunes I, da Silva G, Costa J, Alves S, Bessa R,
Quaresma M. Beef quality from yearling Blonde
d'Aquitaine bulls: effect of diet supplementation with
hydroponic green barley fodder. Rev Port Cienc Vet.
2018;113(607/208):41-51.
4. Fazaeli H, Golmohammadi H, Tabatabayee S,
Asghari-Tabrizi M. Productivity and nutritive value of
barley green fodder yield in hydroponic system. World
Appl Sci J. 2012;16(4):531-9.
5. Khaziev D, Gadiev R, Yusupova C, Kazanina M,
Kopylova S. Effect of hydroponic green herbage on the
productive qualities of parent flock geese. Vet World.
2021;14(4):841-6.
6. Naik P, Swain B, Singh N. Review: Production and
utilisation of hydroponics fodder. Indian J Anim Nutr.
2015;32(1):1-9.
7. Murthy AK, Guduru D, Chakravarthy K, Prasad Y.
Study on effect of Hydroponic Maize fodder
supplementation on milk yield in milch buffaloes. Forage
Res. 2018;44:43-5.
8. Devendar R, Kumari NN, Reddy YR, Rao KS,
Reddy KK, Raju J, et al. Growth Performance, Nutrient
Utilization and Carcass Characteristics of Sheep Fed
Hydroponic Barley Fodder. Anim Nutr Feed Technol.
2020;20(2):321-31.
9. Badran I. Milk yield and quality and performance of
Awassi ewes fed two levels of hydroponic barley. J New
Sci. 2017;39(6):2136-43.
10. Chakravarthi MK, Pavan TV, Sreekar V,
Krishnamurthy A, Kumar CA, Sudheer K, et al. Effect of
dietary incorporation of hydroponic maize fodder on the
growth performance of Newzealand white rabbits. Forage
Res. 2020;46(3):30-2.
11. Haddad NH, Shahed RH. The effect of using
cultivated barleyadopting soilless planting technologyas
poultry feed-on the cost of eggs a case study. Journal of Al-
Quds Open Univ Adm Econ Res. 2021;6(15):3-41.
12. Petenko AI, Aniskina MV, Gneush AN, Danilova
AA, Yurin DA, Yurina NA. Study of efficiency of feeding
fodder bioproduct based on seedlings of hydroponic greens
in quail diets. IOP Conference Series: Earth and
Environmental Science. 2021;659(1):012025.
13. Abouelezz KFM, Sayed MAM, Abdelnabi MA.
Evaluation of hydroponic barley sprouts as a feed
supplement for laying Japanese quail: Effects on egg
production, egg quality, fertility, blood constituents, and
internal organs. Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 2019;252:126-
35.
14. Hassan Mm. Improving utilization of barley grains
as a source of energy in ducks' diets under south sinai
conditions. Egypt Poult Sci J. 2020;40(1):133-51.
15. Talalay GS, Matserushka AR, Kolesnikov RO,
Gvozdaryov , Matserushka VV. Influence of Feeding
with Hydroponic Green Fodder from Barley on Meat
Quality of Chicken-Broilers. J Modern S T Equip Problem
Agric. 2020:225-34.
16. Jacob JP, Pescatore AJ. Using barley in poultry
diets-A review. J Appl Poult Res. 2012;21(4):915-40.
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1863
17. Schwartz B, Vetvicka V. Review:β-glucans as
effective antibiotic alternatives in poultry. Molecules.
2021;26(12):3560.
18. Jacob JP, Pescatore AJ. Barley β-glucan in poultry
diets. Ann Transl Med. 2014;2(2):20.
19. Shukri MM, Ibrahim FK, Mukhlis SAA, Qasim
QA. Effect of use faba bean (minor) and barley soaked
water as a partial substitute for soybeans and maize in
starter and finisher broiler’s diets. J Univ Babylon Pure
Appl Sci. 2019;27(6):33-50.
20. Tawfeeq JA, Hassan SA, Kadori SH, Shaker RM,
Hamza ZR. Evaluation of feeding hydroponics barley on
digestibility and rumen fermentations in awassi lambs. Iraq
J Agric Sci. 2018;4(49):636- 45.
21. Al-Saadi MJ. The effects of substitution barley by
10%,30% hydroponic barley in diet of Awassi male rams
on sexual behavior and reproductive performance. Iraqi J
Agric Res. 2017;22(4):129-39.
22. Al-Gharawi J, Al-Zamili I, Al-Janabi H. Effect of
barley cultivated for different times as supplemented diet in
some productive traits of broiler chickens. Iraq J Agric Sci.
2016;47(1):360-7.
23. Al-Kaisey M, Mohammad MA, Abu-Tubik SM, Al-
Fadhli MKM, Abdul-Abass MM. Effect of germination in
improving the feed value of two local barley cultivars in
broiler chick diets. Mesop J Agric. 2007;35(2):75-83.
24. Aviagen. Ross Broiler Management Handbook.
Huntsville: Aviagen Inc; 2018.
25. AOAC. Official Methods of Analysis. 21st ed.
Gaithersburg, MD. Association of Official Analytical
Chemists. AOAC International, USA; 2019.
26. NRC. Nutrient requirements of poultry. 9th ed.
National Academy Press Washington, D.C.1994.
27. Martins J, Carvalho C, Litz F, Silveira M, Moraes
C, Silva M, et al. Productive and economic performance of
broiler chickens subjected to different nutritional plans.
Braz J Poult Sci. 2016;18(2):209-16.
28. Naderinejad S, Zaefarian F, Abdollahi MR,
Hassanabadi A, Kermanshahi H, Ravindran V. Influence of
feed form and particle size on performance, nutrient
utilisation, and gastrointestinal tract development and
morphometry in broiler starters fed maize-based diets.
Anim Feed Sci Techn. 2016;215:92-104.
29. Blackburn CdW, McCarthy J. Modifications to
methods for the enumeration and detection of injured
Escherichia coli O157: H7 in foods. Int J Food Microbiol.
2000;55(1-3):285-90.
30. SPSS. IBM SPSS Statistics for Windows, Version
27.0. computer software. Armonk, NY: IBM Corp; 2020.
31. Duncan DB. Multiple range and multiple F tests.
Biometrics. 1955;11:1-42.
32. Alshamiry FA. A brief report on Barley
Hydroponics; The importance, steps, advantages and
disadvantages. Int J Food Microbiol. 2020;19(5):212-24.
33. Dastar B, Sabet Moghaddam A, Shams Shargh M,
Hassani S. Effect of different levels of germinated barley
on live performance and carcass traits in broiler chickens.
Poult Sci J. 2014;2(1):61-9.
34. Alinaitwe J, Nalule A, Okello S, Nalubwama S,
Galukande E. Nutritive and economic value of hydroponic
barley fodder in kuroiler chicken diets. J Agric Vet Sci.
2019;12:76-83.
35. Kolesnikov R, Morozov V, Matserushka A, Talalay
G, Kolesnokova M, editors. Resistance of dairy cows
during the use of new production fodder. International
research conference on Challenges and Advances in
Farming, Food Manufacturing, Agricultural Research and
Education, KnE Life Sciences; 2021.
36. Gacutan MD, Merca FE, Bautista JAN, Sulabo RC,
del Barrio AN, Angeles AA. Chemical composition,
agronomic characteristics and cost of corn (zea mays L.)
sprouts as animal fodder. Philipp J Vet Med.
2021;47(1):39-47.
37. Bulgakov V, Ihnatiev Y. Problems of production
and use of hydroponic products in agricultural production. J
Mech Agric. 2019;65(2):72-3
38. Rama Rao SV, Prakash B, Rajkumar U, Raju
MVLN, Srilatha T, Reddy EPK. Effect of supplementing
germinated sprouts of pulses on performance, carcass
variables, immune and oxidative stress indicators in broiler
chickens reared during tropical summer season. Trop Anim
Health Prod. 2018;50(5):1147-54.
39. Svihus B, Herstad O, Newman CW. Effect of
highmoisture storage of barley, oats, and wheat on
chemical content and nutritional value for broiler chickens.
Acta Agric Scand. A Anim Sci. 1997;47(1):39-47.
40. Atturi KM, Chakravarthy K, Guduru D. Effect of
hydroponic maize fodder supplementation on production
performance in broilers. Forage Res. 2020;46(1):98-100.
41. Vojtech A, Lucie K, Martina L. The effect of green
fodder on slow growing chickens performance. Mendel
Net. 2015;7(1):109-12.
42. Pakfetrat S, Amiri S, Radi M, Abedi E, Torri L.
Reduction of phytic acid, aflatoxins and other mycotoxins
Al-Kanaan / Archives of Razi Institute, Vol. 77, No. 5 (2022) 1853-1864
1864
in wheat during germination. J Sci Food Agric.
2019;99(10):4695-701.
43. Al-Kanaan GA, Al-Bader SH, Al-Kanaan AJ, Al-
Aqaby HD. Effects of different levels of vitamin c
intake on some productive traits and blood parameters in
rabbits. AIP Conference Proceedings Istanbul, Turkey.
2021.
44. Shaheed MJ. The effect of adding germinated date
kernel powder to the diet on production performance and
some broilers E. coli bacteria. Ann Romanian Soc Cell
Biol. 2021;25(3):8135-42.
45. Sugiharto S. A review of filamentous fungi in
broiler production. Ann Agric Sci. 2019;64(1):1-8.
46. Abbas RJ, AlShaheen SA, Majeed TI. Effect of
different levels of basil and peppermint an essential oils on
productive and physiological performance of two lines of
growing quail (Coturnix Coturnix Japonica). Biochem Cell
Arch. 2021;21(1):27-37.
47. Yamauchi K-e. Review on Chicken Intestinal Villus
Histological Alterations Related with Intestinal Function.
Poult Sci J. 2002;39(4):229-42. .
48. Perera WNU, Abdollahi MR, Zaefarian F, Wester
TJ, Ravindran G, Ravindran V. Influence of inclusion level
of barley in wheat-based diets and supplementation of
carbohydrase on growth performance, nutrient utilisation
and gut morphometry in broiler starters. Bri Poult Sci.
2019;60(6):736-48.
49. Hoshmandi AM, yaghobfar A, Bojarpour M, Salari
S. The Effect of Processing Barley Cultivars on Intestinal
Morphology, Enzyme Activity and Volatile Fatty Acids of
the Small Intestine and Serum Lipid Levels of Broiler
Chickens. J Vet Res. 2018;73(4):403-18.
50. Ali HS, Miah AG, Sabuz SH, Asaduzzaman M,
Salma U. Dietary effects of hydroponic wheat sprouted
fodder on growth performance of turkey. Res Agric Livest
Fish. 2019;6(1):101-10.
... [33] tarafından damızlık kazlarda %25-30 düzeyinde hidroponik arpa yeşil yemi ilavesinin üretimde kârlılığı %9.6 oranında artırdığı belirtilmiştir. Jabbar [35] ise etlik piliçlerin yemlerine %10 hidroponik arpa yeşil yemi ilavesinin üretim maliyetlerini %9 azalttığını belirtmiştir. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Dünya nüfusunun kontrolsüz artması, beslenme uzmanlarının sağlıklı ve dengeli besleme konusunda uyarılarda bulunması kanatlı endüstrisine olan talebi her geçen gün artırmaktadır. Günümüzde kanatlı endüstrisinde gıda ile yem üretimi arasında yoğunlaşan rekabetin azaltılması, ürün kalitesinin iyileştirilmesi, çevre dostu ve sürdürülebilir bir üretim yapmak amacıyla yemlerin hidroponik üretimi gündeme gelmiştir. Hidroponik üretim modelinde toprak, pestisit veya gübre olmaksızın su ve besin solüsyonu ile kısa sürede bitkilerin yetiştirilmesi hedeflenmektedir. Hidroponik üretim modeli çevre koşullarından bağımsız her mevsim yeşil kaba yem üretimine imkân sağlamaktadır. Hidroponik yöntem ile kanatlı hayvanların gelişimi için gerekli olan ham protein, aminoasit, vitamin B ve E içeriği yüksek, kalsiyum ve fosfor içeren, selüloz ve karoten içeriği nispeten düşük yemlerin üretimi mümkün olmaktadır. Bu modelle arpa, buğday, yulaf, çavdar gibi tahıllar çimlendirilerek, kanatlı beslemede kaba yem kaynağı olarak kullanılmaktadır. Kanatlı endüstrisinde hidroponik kaba yem kaynaklarının kullanılmasının üretim performansı, refah düzeyi ve sindirim sistemi mikroflorası üzerine olumlu etkilerde bulunduğu düşünülmektedir. Bu bildiride kanatlı beslemede hidroponik olarak üretilen yemlerin besin madde içerikleri ile üretim performansı ve ilişkili parametreler üzerine etkileri ilgili literatür verileri değerlendirilerek incelenecektir.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Twelve female rabbits (average body weight 1350-1500 g) used in this investigation to study the effect of different levels of vitamin C on some production traits and blood parameters in Iraqi local rabbits. After the preliminary period, rabbits divided into 4 groups (each 3 animals): Group A drenched only 5 ml distilled water (control), and groups B, C and D were drenched 5 ml contain 100 mg, 200 mg and 300 mg, respectively, of vitamin C daily after 2 and 4 weeks of treatment. Supplementation of 200 mg vitamin C significantly increase rabbits live body weight, total weight gain, feed intake, and improving feed conversion ratio comparing with group B and control group after 2 and 4 weeks of treatment with vitamin C. After 4 weeks of vitamin C treatment, results show increasing in average total body weight and feed conversion ratio, with decreasing in average total feed intake and total weight gain comparing with the first two weeks of the experiment for the same groups. Generally, group C show significantly increasing in RBC, WBC, PVC, Hb, and blood platelets comparing with other groups, while, control group show the lower values. In addition, results show increasing in all blood parameters after 4 weeks of treatment in contrast with the first 2 weeks of vitamin C intake. It can be concluded that adding 200 mg or 300 mg of vitamin C could improve production and blood parameters in local Iraqi rabbits.
Article
Full-text available
A study was conducted to determine the chemical composition, agronomic traits, and cost of production of 3d, 6d, 9d, and 12d corn sprouts. Corn seeds were steeped for 24hr and laid out in a 12 in x 24 in x 2 in a tray at a density of 10.7 kg/m 2. Watering was done 3x daily at 8 am, 12nn, and 4 pm. Production was repeated in 6 batches which served as replicates. Results were analyzed using one-way ANOVA in CRD with subsamples using the Proc Mixed procedure of SAS. Trend comparison was used and means were reported as LS means with standard error. Significance was declared if P<0.05 and trend if 0.05<P<0.10 using Tukey's HSD test. Results showed a significant decrease in DM and NFC contents. Thus, there was a decrease in the DM yield of corn sprouts after 6d due to depletion of stored nutrients over time to support plant shoot growth. The decrease in DM led to an increase in CP, Ash, NDF, ADF, and GE from 3d to 12d due to metabolic interconversion of nutrients. Roots increased progressively from 3d to 12d in terms of length and number and so was the plant height. Leaves started to appear between 3d to 6d with a maximum of 3 leaves after 12d. Lastly, corn sprout production using low-cost technology resulted to an increase in cost per kilogram DM from 3d to 12d due to water usage and labor cost.
Article
Full-text available
The occurrence of microbial challenges in commercial poultry farming causes significant economic losses. Antibiotics have been used to control diseases involving bacterial infection in poultry. As the incidence of antibiotic resistance turns out to be a serious problem, there is increased pressure on producers to reduce antibiotic use. With the reduced availability of antibiotics, poultry producers are looking for feed additives to stimulate the immune system of the chicken to resist microbial infection. Some β-glucans have been shown to improve gut health, to increase the flow of new immunocytes, increase macrophage function, stimulate phagocytosis, affect intestinal morphology, enhance goblet cell number and mucin-2 production, induce the increased expression of intestinal tight-junctions, and function as effective anti-inflammatory immunomodulators in poultry. As a result, β-glucans may provide a new tool for producers trying to reduce or eliminate the use of antibiotics in fowl diets. The specific activity of each β-glucan subtype still needs to be investigated. Upon knowledge, optimal β-glucan mixtures may be implemented in order to obtain optimal growth performance, exert anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory activity, and optimized intestinal morphology and histology responses in poultry. This review provides an extensive overview of the current use of β glucans as additives and putative use as antibiotic alternative in poultry.
Article
Full-text available
Background and aim: Green food is the natural diet for livestock and poultry. Therefore, production of green food in sufficient quantities to meet the current demand has emerged as an urgent problem today. The use of natural laylands results in green food shortage, which, in turn, necessitates the application of various methods of artificial production of green herbage. One of these methods is hydroponic cultivation of green grass as animal feed. Hence, this study was conducted to investigate the productive and reproductive qualities of geese of the parent herd. Materials and methods: Complex scientific analysis was conducted to explore the effect of hydroponic green herbage used at various dosages (20%, 25%, 30%, and 35% of total diet weight) on the realization of the reproductive qualities of parent flock geese. The methodological framework of this research is the efforts of various foreign and domestic scientists on the topic under study. This research was conducted using generally accepted methods (i.e., experiment, comparison, analysis, and generalization), along with special methods (zootechnical, physiological, biological, hematological, morphological, statistical, and economic). Results: The optimal dosage of hydroponic green herbage for geese diet was established, which constituted 25-30% of the total diet weight and increased the poultry population survival rate by 2.0%, egg production rate by 3.8%, and the hatching egg yield by 4.9%. The carotenoid content in egg yolk ranged from 1.62 to 3.50 μg. The content of Vitamins A and B2 was higher by 3.19 and 2.32 μg, respectively, compared to that in the control. The production profitability level increased by 9.6%. Conclusion: By introducing 25-30% of hydroponic greens from the weight of the diet, it is possible to increase the safety of livestock by 2%, the yield of hatching eggs by 4.9%, egg production by 1.46-1.11 μg.
Article
Full-text available
The objective of the study was to assess the effect of dietary incorporation of hydroponics maize fodder as a replacement of concentrate mixture on the growth performance of New Zealand White rabbits. The study was conducted at Livestock Farm Complex, College of Veterinary Science, Proddatur wherein 18 weaned rabbits were allotted randomly into 3 groups with each group consisting of 6 rabbits, namely control (100 % concentrate mixture), treatment-1 (100 % hydroponic maize fodder), treatment-2 (50 % concentrates and 50 % hydroponic fodder) groups in a completely randomized design.Feed intake of all rabbits were recorded daily, where as the body weights were recorded at weekly interval. Growth parameters such as body weight (g), body weight gain/week (g), average daily gain (g), dry matter intake (g), feed efficiency and economics such as the cost of feeding /animal and cost of feeding/ g body weight in these 3 groups were studied. Treatment-2 comprising of 50 % replacement of concentrates with 50 % hydroponics maize fodder has shown significant increase in body weight gain/ week (93.13±6.04g), average daily gain (13.30±0.86g) when compared to treatment-1 and control group and decrease in dry matter intake (31.79±0.39g) when compared with control group.Cost of feeding / animal/70 days (39.72 INR) and Cost of feeding/g body weight (0.04 INR) was found to be lower in treatment-1 when compared with treatment-2 and control group.
Article
Full-text available
A 120 d growth study was conducted in Deccani sheep to evaluate the effect of feeding hydroponically grown barley fodder (HBF) on growth performance, nutrient utilization and carcass characteristics. Eighteen Deccani ram lambs of 3 months age (13.0±0.42 kg) were divided into three groups of six in each in a completely randomized design. Three iso-nitrogenous rations were formulated, in which the control ration (CON) was prepared by using roughage (chopped sorghum stover) and concentrate at 60:40 ratio; the other two experimental rations were formulated by replacing 50 (L-HBF) and 75 (H-HBF), per cent of CP of concentrate mixture with HBF at low and high levels, respectively. The replacement of concentrate mixture at 50% in L-HBF significantly (P<0.05) improved the ADG compared to other dietary treatments accompanying a higher (P<0.05) DM intake. The cost per kg production was significantly (P<0.05) lowered in the L-HBF group compared to CON. Digestibility of DM, CP and NFE were significantly (P<0.05) improved with replacement of concentrate mixture with HBF in L-HBF group compared to control. The N balance was significantly (P<0.05) higher in the L-HBF lambs which were found to be on a higher plane of nutrition with greater intakes of DCP and TDN. The carcass characteristics did not vary among the three groups. The results indicated that replacement of concentrate mixture with hydroponic barley fodder at 50 per cent level of CP in the ration of growing lambs improved the nutrient utilization, N balance, plane of nutrition and growth performance and reduced the production cost.
Article
Full-text available
Hydroponic fodder is an alternative technology to provide the sustainability of high-quality forage for ruminant. Hydroponic sprout contains grass juice which is essential to increase the ruminant performance because the grass juice from hydroponic can contribute to the enhancement of microbial activity. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of harvesting time toward fodder production and nutrient content of hydroponic maize fodder. This study used maize seed and hypochlorite solution for a disinfectant agent. The method used in this study was a completely randomized design (CRD) with 5 treatments. The treatments used was the difference of harvesting time, P1 = 8 days, P2 = 12 days, P3 = 16 days, P4 = 20 days, P5 = 24 days. Variables measured were % germination, growth (plant height), forage production, and nutrient content (dry matter, organic matter, crude protein, and crude fiber). The results showed that the harvesting time is a highly significant effect (P <0.01) on plant height, forage production, and nutrient content. Based on research, hydroponic maize fodder has an advantage as a source of quality forage for livestock because it has a high protein. The crude protein contains on P1 with 12,36 %, P2 = 14,91%, P3 = 17,11%, P4 18,43% and P5 = 17,58 %. The conclusion is the 20 th day of harvesting time has good quality and production as an alternative animal forage.
Article
Full-text available
An experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of different levels of germinated barley (GB) on live performance and carcass traits in broiler chickens. The experiment lasted for 5 weeks starting from 7 days of age and ending at 42 days of age. Chicks (Ross 308) were fed six dietary treatments including a corn-soy diet (corn diet), a barley-soy diet (barley diet), a barley diet plus enzymes (enzyme barley diet), and 3 other diets in which GB was replaced with barley at levels of 33%, 66%, and 100% in the barley diet (33% GB diet, 66% GB diet, and GB diet, respectively). Data were analyzed in a completely randomized design. Results indicated that birds fed a barley diet had significantly lower performance than those fed other diets (P<0.05). Supplementing of the barley diet with β-glucanase enzyme as well as replacing GB with barley improved the performance of broilers. Birds fed a GB diet had a significantly higher carcass yield those fed other diets (P<0.05). The lowest abdominal fat percentage was observed in birds fed a barley diet or a corn diet. Thus, it is concluded that replacing GB with barley, especially at 33% level, is more effective than supplementing barley diets with β-glucanase enzyme in improving live performance of broiler chickens.