The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of different levels of alfalfa meal on performance, egg quality, egg yolk cholesterol and hatchability parameters of quail breeders. In this trial a total of 90 Japanese quail breeders (30 males, 60 females), 10 weeks old was distributed 5 experimental groups randomly. Each experimental group consisted of 6 replicates of 3 quails (1 males, 2 females) in each. During the 12 weeks experiment period, birds were fed with 5 dietary groups based on corn and soybean meal and containing 0 (control), 10, 20, 40 and 80 g/kg alfalfa meal. Feed and water were offered ad-libitum throughout the experiment. The different dietary levels of alfalfa meal had no significant effect on body weight change, egg production, egg weight, egg mass, feed conversion ratio, egg shell breaking strength, egg yolk triglyceride, fertility, hatchability of fertile eggs or hatchability of eggs set. The feed intake was decreased with 10 or 20 g/kg alfalfa meal levels in the diet. The eggshell weight was best in quails fed 20 g/kg alfalfa meal, and the egg yolk cholesterol was the lowest in quails fed 40 g/kg alfalfa meal. According to the results of this study the addition of 40 g/kg alfalfa meal in laying quail diets decreased the egg yolk cholesterol levels without adverse effect on performance.
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Document Type: Research Article
Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Selçuk University, 42075 Selçuklu/Konya
Department of Crop and Animal Production, Fethiye Ali Sıtkı Mefharet Koçman Vocational School, Muğla Sıtkı Koçman University,48300 Fethiye/Muğla,
January 1, 2014