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  • Heat treated feeds in turkey feeding

    The main aim of our study was to determine the effect of expanded and pelleted feeds, as well as the only pelleted feed based on wheat and corn, on the production of turkeys. In May 2006,, a fattening experiment on turkeys was started on the starter farm of Habar Ltd in Szarvas, owned by the Gallicoop Corporation. 17 day old male turkeys were involved in the fattening experiment. The experiment lasted 117 days. At that time, theanimals were 134 days old. After the experiment was completed, they were slaughtered. The following parameters were examined: growth, feed conversion ratio, carcass traits. Turkey feed were produced separately at different times. Similarly to the standard method of turkey fattening, 8 phases feeding was carried out. The fattening experiment was adjusted on male turkeys in 4×12×6 grouping (4 treatments: expanded and pelleted, and only pelleted corn and wheat feed; 12 repeats: number of pens/treatments; 6 birds/pen) 6-6 turkeys from 12 pens per each treatments were measured individually from the 17th day (starter) and at the time of each following feeding changes and mortality. The average of the group was calculated. The average daily weight gain, proportion of the given feed per pen, feeding changes and mortality were determined. The average daily feed intake and the feed conversion ratio were calculated.

  • Role of hypothalamic neuropeptides in feed intake regulation of livestock species (literary review)

    Energy balance is the net result of the energy intake (nutrition) and expenditure (basic metabolic rate). The purpose of the daily feed intake is to provide energy and nutrients for maintenance, production and fill and maintain energy storages in form of glycogen and fat. Animals can adjust their feed intake to ensure their energy demand. Food intake regulation in animals and human is a very complex process, in which the digestive system, the central nervous system, the joining hormonal and non-hormonal factors, and the integrating hypothalamus take part. This review primarily focuses on the action mechanism of some important appetite regulating neuropeptides, and their impacts on the performance traits of the economically significant animal species.

  • A growth model to predict body weight and body composition of broilers

    Models predicting the nutrient partitioning and animal performance have been developed for decades. Nowadays, growth models are used in practical animal nutrition, and they have particular importance in precision livestock farming. The aim of the present study was to introduce a broiler model and to provide examples on model application. The model predicts protein and fat deposition as well as the body weight of an individual broiler chicken from digestible nutrient intake over time. Feed intake (FI) and the digestible nutrient content of the feed are inputs as well as some animal factors like: initial BW, feed intake at 1 and 2 kg of BW, precocity and mean protein deposition. The protein and energy metabolism is represented as in the classical nutrient partitioning models. The protein deposition (PD) is driven by digestible amino acid supply and is under “genetic control”, the so-called potential PD limits the actual PD if protein is oversupplied.

    The authors discuss how the model can be used to simulate the animal response upon different scenarios. Examples are given to show that the diet might be limiting if some animal trait is changed. Applicability of the model has shown through running the model by using different feed strategies (three- vs five-phase-feeding) and variations with animal factors. In conclusion, growth models are useful tools to support decision making for defining the most suitable feeds used in a broiler farm. The model presented in this paper shows a high sensibility and flexibility to test different scenarios. By challenging the model with different inputs, the animal response in terms of changes in body weight and feed conversion can be understood more by studying the shift in deposition of chemical constituents. The examples provided in the present paper shows the benefit of using mathematical models and their applicability in precision nutrition. It can be concluded that the growth model helps to apply “from desired feed to desired food” concept.

  • Individual cage housing affects feed intake and induces sex-specific effects on body weight in Japanese quails

    Individual cage housing in poultry production could be a potentially stressful environment for the birds that can alter feed intake, consequently induce negative effects on performance. Previous studies used individual bird-based experiments to extract the detailed molecular, physiological, and fitness outcomes of treatments. Understanding sex-specific effects of isolation on social birds such as Japanese quails (Coturnix japonica) may reveal important considerations. To understand this phenomenon, birds were kept in groups of 10 for one week and they were kept in individual cages for another week.  Daily feed intake (DFI) was measured each day and body weight was measured at the beginning, middle, and end of group rearing and at the beginning and end of individual rearing. It was found that both males and females showed a reduction DFI in response to individual rearing (p<0.0001). Females consumed on average 29.38% higher amount of feed than males. Additionally, females showed a pronounced reduction in body weight after isolation, while the effect on males was not significant. Similarly, females had on average 17.61% higher body weight than males. The body weight to DFI ratio was higher in males than females. The finding of this research revealed an important implication of isolation and sex differences.

  • Effect of different lysine-metabolized energy ratio on performance of meat-type geese

    The aim of the experiment was to determine, how the different ratios of the digestibility lysine/ metabolized energy (0.82, 0.87, 0.91 g DLYS/MJ AMEn) of the feed influence the performance of geese. There were 150 goslings (3 treatments, 5 cages/treatments, 10 birds/cages). The experiment has started and finished at the age of 3 and 9 weeks, respectively.
    The results of the experiment showed, the different ratios of DLYS/AMEn (0.82, 0.87, 0.91 g DLYS/MJ AMEn) did not influence the performance of young geese. Better growth performances were found for the 0.91 g DLYS/AMEn feed (feed intake, body weight gain, feed and energy conversion rate). This treatment coincided with high feeding costs. Based on these results we need more models and farm experiments to prove this tendency.

  • The Effects of Corn Cobs in Feed

    This study is part of a larger research work that aims to establish the usefulness of corn cobs, a low cost dietary resource, in the growth of ruminants. Corn cobs are found in large amounts in our country (8.2 mil. tons/year). Increasing the quantity of corn cobs to 50% of the diet in lambs resulted in a decrease by 14.57% in the concentrate intake that is needed to obtain one-kg weight increase. In addition, the diet costs were reduced by 16.33% (Mierliţă, 1999). Increasing the quantity of corn cobs to 20-50% of the diet also resulted in multiplication of bacteria from genus Ruminococcus, that are known to represent about 70-80% of the bacteria population in the rumen. In addition, an increased multiplication rate of large protozoas (i.e. Epidinium, Isotrichia, Diplodinium etc) was observed. This explains the high conversion rate of piruvic acid, a carbohydrate fermentation product, into acetic acid, whereas conversion of piruvic acid into propionic acid decreases. In addition, feed intake and the quantity of digested and absorbed fibers increased by 8.46% and 35.09%, respectively. Thus, a reduction in dietary concentrates needed as nutrient supplies was achieved.

  • Comparison of Voluntary Feed Intake and Venom Production of Wild and Laboratory Bred Sand Vipers

    The study was performed on vipers of the Vipera ammodytes ammodytes species and aimed to establish the differences in voluntary feed intake and venom production between a group of wild, recently captured vipers and a group of born and bred captive vipers. In addition, the influence of sex on both parameters was established. The research brought evidence of important differences concerning voluntary food ingestion and venom production between the two groups of animals. However, sex appeared not to significantly influence these parameters, both in wild, recently captured vipers and in born and bred captive vipers. Wild animals rapidly accommodated to the microclimate conditions in captivity and readily accepted food.

  • The effects of the nanoselenium supplementation to the production parameters and the selenium retention of the red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus)

    The selenium is an essential trace element with antioxidant effect, constituent of many enzymes, natural component of the body of the animals. The addition to the fish feed as micro element supplementation is generally accepted. Numerous animal experiments veryfied, that the antioxidant effect of the nanoselenium is higher than other selenium forms. But no much information is available of the usuage at fish.

    In the experiment were investigated the effects of the nanoselenium supplementation of a commercial fish feed were investigated to the production parameters and the body tissue composition. The correlation between the accumulated selenium content of the body and the treatment, and the feed conversation was also statistically analyzed beside the production parameters. Furthermore we were curious, if can be toxic the nanoselenium in higher doses.

    The experimental stock was placed into 12 plastic tanks (each 70 l water vol.) in a recirculation system for larval rearing. The salinity and the water temperature was constant during the 8 week long experiment. The feeding was ad libitum, 4 times a day. Beside the control five (1, 1.5, 2.5, 5.5, 10.5 mg Se kg-1) duplicated treatment were set.

    According to the results, from the production parameters only at the value of FCR and the survival was found significant difference (p<0.05) between the groups. However strong correlation (r=0.752–0.780, p<0.01) was determined between the treatment and the accumulated selenium levels. To analyzed the free fatty acid contentof the fish, we realized, that the selenium uptake significanly enhanced this level at all treatments. The greatest change was found in case of the type n-3 fatty acids.

    Established by the results, the higher intake than 0.5 mg Se kg-1 was not changed significantly the production parameters, nevertheless to increase the selenium content of commercial feeds to 1.5 mg Se kg-1 could be rewarding on the rearing of red drum.

  • Effects of diets with different fibre content on the performance of rabbit does and on parasitological infection

    The effect of two diets with different fibre contents was examined on rabbit does’ performance and parasitological infection. Diet P2 had 1% higher crude fibre, ADF and starch contents than that of diet P1. The performance of 12–12 does and litters per group were examined during two consecutive inseminations. In both dietary groups, according to a 49-day reproduction rhythm, the does were artificially inseminated 18 days after kindling. Most production traits were not affected by the diets (kindling rate, weight of does and their kits, feed intake, mortality; P>0.05). Significant differences were only found in litter sizes as the number of kits was lower in P1 diet fed group at all examined days of lactation. The significant “Diet x Reproduction cycle” interaction showed that the litter sizes of dietary groups did not differ at the first examined insemination, however at the subsequent reproduction cycle 6–8% lower litter sizes were counted in P1 fed does compared to group P2 (litter size at 4 day: 9.00 vs 9.58–9.92, P = 0.004; litter size at 11 day: 8.83 vs 9.58–9.92, P = 0.037 for diet P1 at the 2nd reproductive cycle compared to all the other cases, respectively). The two diets with different compositions did not affect most of the production results of the rabbit does and their kits, but the lower litter size of does consuming P1 diet at the second examined lactation suggests the adverse effect of P1 diet’s long-term use. From the collected manure samples not any parasites were detected which presents a very favourable picture of farm from the point of view of hygiene and animal health.

  • Polymorphism of the bovine GH and LEP genes in a population of Slovak spotted bulls

    The aim of this study was the detection of polymorphism in the bovine growth hormone and leptin genes using the PCR-RFLP method. A
    polymorphic site of the growth hormone gene (Alul loci) that results in amino acid change at position 127 of the protein chain (leucine, L to
    valine, V) has been linked to differences in circulating metabolites, metabolic hormones and to milk yield. The polymorphism in bovine leptin
    gene is situated in the intron between two exons, which results in an amino acid change at position 2059 of the protein chain (cytosine, C to
    thymine, T). The polymorphisms were studied in a group of 58 bulls of the Slovak spotted breed. A strategy employing PCR was used to amplify 428 bp (GH gene) and 422 bp (LEP gene) products from blood samples. Digestion of PCR products with restriction enzymes AluI and Sau3AI revealed alleles: L and V; A and B for GH gene and LEP gene, respectively. The growth hormone gene is a candidate gene for body weight gain in cattle, since it plays a fundamental role in growth regulation. Leptin plays an important role in the regulation of feed intake, energy metabolism, growth and reproduction of cattle; therefore, animals with higher leptin gene expression will probably have lower daily weight gain than others with similar forage offer and nutritional condition and will also likely have longer calving intervals. 

  • The effect of feeding different glycerol sources on the performance of lactating sows

    Glycerol is a by-product of the biodiesel industry and it might be a good alternative to moderate the energy deficiency of sows during the lactation period. Preliminary experiments were carried out to test the effect of a powder, solid based “food grade” glycerol source with 72.9% glycerol content (Trial 1) and a liquid “feed grade” glycerol source with 86% glycerol content (Trial 2) on the performance of lactating sows and their litters. Trial 1 was conducted with 5 Hungarian Large White×Hungarian Landrace sows/treatment (313±24.9 kg) and Trial 2 with 12–12 DanAvl (323±17.0 kg) sows and their litters/treatment. Neither the solid, powder based glycerol (Trial 1), nor the liquid glycerol source (Trial 2) had significant effect on the feed intake, reduction in live weight and back-fat thickness, and weaning-tooestrus interval (p>0.05) of lactating sows. In Trial 2, on the 14th, 21st and 27th days of lactation the milk samples were collected and it was found that 50 kg/t glycerol decreased the protein content of milk samples (p<0.05). Glycerol supplementation had no effect on dry matter, fat, lactose content of milk samples (p>0.05). In Trial 2, no significant difference was found between control and experimental sow groups in triglyceride concentration of blood samples and in the activity of liver enzymes (ALT, AST, GGT; p>0.05), but the concentration of plasma glucose and cholesterol increased tendentiously (p<0.10).

    Based on our preliminary results, it can be concluded that additional dose trials are needed to perform in order to study the effect of glycerol supplement on milk production and on metabolic processes of lactating sows.

  • Upgrading breeding value estimation in beef cattle

    This paper gives a summary of the possibility for applying genomic information for breeding value estimation in beef cattle breeding. This process is called genomic prediction and is now widely used in dairy cattle globally as well as in some beef and sheep populations. The advantage of genomic prediction is a more accurate estimate of the genetic merit of an individual at a young age thereby facilitating greater annual genetic gain, predominantly through shorter generation intervals. Genomic predictions are more advantageous for sex-linked (e.g., milk yield), low heritability (e.g., fertility) and difficult-to-measure (e.g., feed intake) traits. The larger the reference population, on average, the more accurate the genomic predictions; additionally, the closer genetically the reference population is to the candidate population, the greater the accuracy of genomic predictions. Research is continuing on strategies to generate accurate genomic predictions using a reference population consisting of multiple breeds (and crossbred). Retrospective analysis of real-life data where genomic predictions have been operation for several years clearly shows a benefit of this technology.