Effects of Water Leaf (Talinum triangulare) Shoot Meal on the Performance of Weaner New Zealand White Rabbits
Greener Journal of Animal Breeding and Genetics
Thirty (30) weaner New Zealand white rabbits of both sexes, made up of fifteen (15) males and fifteen (15) females were used for the experiment to investigate, the performance characteristics and carcass characteristics of weaner rabbits fed five (5) dietary levels of Talinum triangulare shoot meal (TTSM). Treatments 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 received 0, 10, 15, 20 and 25% TTSM, respectively. Results obtained showed that rabbits on T2 diet achieved the corresponding weight gain (1876.00) while T1, T3,
... 00) while T1, T3, T4 and T5 recorded weight gains of (1925.00, 1799, 1743 and 1655), respectively. Rabbits on T2 diets also recorded a corresponding daily weight gain (74g) than those on T3, T4 and T5 (73g, 68g and 55g), respectively. There was also significant difference (P< 0.05) on the feed cost per kg gain as T2 feed was cheaper (N191.20), than T3, T4 and T5 whose feed costs were N176.20, N151.10 and N119.70 respectively. Feed intake and initial live weight had no significant difference (P > 0.05) across the treatments. Results of organ weights showed a significant difference (P < 0.05) on the weight of intestine (g), heart weight (g), liver weight (g) and kidney weight (g) respectively. This investigation therefore suggests that New Zealand white rabbits can tolerate Talinum triangulare shoot meal (TTSM) up to 20% level for optimal performance. Higher levels of incorporation resulted in decreased performance and should be discouraged.