Effects of feeding a fermented product on egg production, faecal microflora and faecal pH in laying hens
Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences
This study was conducted to investigate the effects of feeding fermented product (FP) to layers on laying performance, faecal microflora and pH. A total of 96, 13-week-old Babcock B380 pullets were used in the study. They were randomly assigned to four numerically equal groups with eight replicates per treatment, three birds per replicate. All the birds were caged individually. The treatments consisted of Diet 1 (Control), without FP, Diet 2 (FP3) contained 3% (w/w) FP (30g FP/kg diet), Diet 3
... FP6) contained 6% (w/w) FP (60 g FP/kg diet) and Diet 4 (FP9) contained 9% (w/w) FP (90 g FP/kg diet). The study was conducted for 14 weeks with 2 weeks of acclimatization. Fresh faecal samples were collected fortnightly started from 15 weeks of age. The feed intake, egg production, feed conversion ratio (feed intake, g/egg mass, g), egg mass (egg x egg production/100) and egg weight were not affected by the addition of FP at any level in the diets. However, the egg weight for FP6 was significantly higher than FP9. The faeces samples were cultured for lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and Enterobacteriaceae. The results obtained from this study showed that FP reduced (P<0.05) the faecal Enterobacteriaceae and pH value. Higher (P<0.05) counts of faecal LAB in layers fed with FP were observed. In conclusions, these results indicate that FP could be included up to 6% in the diets of layers contributed to heavier egg weight and shifting the microflora composition of the layers' gastrointestinal tract toward a beneficial balance.