GROWTH AND ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE, SOME HEMATOLOGICAL, BIOCHEMICAL AND OXIDATIVE STRESS PARAMETERS, AND CARCASS TRAITS OF SUMMER STRESSED CALIFORNIAN AND CROSSBRED RABBITS AS AFFECTED BY DIETARY SUPPLEMENTATION OF FORMIC ACID
Slovenian Veterinary Research
The aim of present study was to examine the effect dietary supplementation of formic acid on growth performance, some heamatological, biochemical and oxidative stress parameters as well as carcass traits of summer stressed Californian (CAL) and Californian × Rex (CAL × RX) crossbred rabbits. A total of 60 rabbits 4 weeks old were allotted into 2 × 3 completely randomized design (two genotypes; CAL and CAL × RX and three dietary treatment; 0, 0.3 and 0.5% formic acid).Rabbits were subjected to a
... were subjected to a temperature of 32±1°C during the experimental period, they were slaughtered at 10 weeks of age and blood samples were collected at slaughtering. Rabbits fed diet with 0.5% formic acid had the higher final body weight (P<0.001), body weight gain (BWG) (P<0.001), average daily gain (ADG) (P<0.001) and the lowest feed to gain ratio (P<0.001) compared with those fed diet with 0.3% formic acid and the control rabbits. Rabbits fed diet supplemented with 0.3% formic acid had higher significant total protein (P<0.001) and globulin (P<0.001) than the control rabbits whilst, the highest significant red blood cell (RBCs), white blood cell (WBCs) count and catalase activity have been recorded in 0.5% formic acid group. Carcass traits significantly affected (P<0.05) by dietary supplementation of formic acid were; hot and reference carcass weights, and dressing-out, skin, stomach, intestine, liver, hind part proportions. The effect of genotype × dietary supplement of formic acid was significant for average daily feed intake (ADFI), (P=0.028), cholesterol (P=0.001), Hb (P=0.002), haematocrit percentage (P=0.006) glutathione peroxidase (P=0.026), and dressing-out% (P=0.028). Net profit for CAL and CAL × RX were 8.68 and 10.34 (LE/rabbit) and for 0, 0.3 and 0.5% formic acid were 4.87, 10.11 and 13.72 LE/rabbit. In conclusion, Formic acid can be used as a dietary supplement at 0.5% of diet to improve economic efficiency, growth traits and health, immune parameters in the blood and improved the antioxidant status without any harmful effect on carcass traits.