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Asian-Australas J Anim Sci. 2017 Apr;30(4):523-530. doi: 10.5713/ajas.16.0691. Epub 2016 Dec 17.

Growth performance, nutrients digestibility, and blood metabolites of lambs fed diets supplemented with probiotics during pre- and post-weaning period.

Author information

1
Animal and Poultry Production Department, Faculty of Agriculture, South Valley University, Qena 83523, Egypt.
2
Animal and Poultry Production Department, Faculty of Agriculture, Minia University, Minia, Egypt.
3
Animal and Poultry Production and Fish Department, Faculty of Agriculture, Aswan University, Aswan, Egypt.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects on growth performance, digestibility, and blood metabolites of lambs during pre- and post-weaning period of inclusion of a commercial probiotic (PRO) containing a mixture of two strains of Pediococcus, Pediococcus acidilactici (1×106 colony-forming unit [cfu]/g) and Pediococcus pentosaceus (1.3×106 cfu/g), with dextrose as the carrier compound compared to a diet based on concentrate mixture and wheat straw.

METHODS:

In exp. 1, 24 male lambs of about 15±2.6 d age and initial body weight (BW) of 5.52±0.6 kg were randomly allocated into three groups. One group received control diet without additives, and remainders received control diet supplemented with 0.5 or 1 g PRO/lamb/d. Daily feed intake and biweekly BW were recorded. In exp. 2, five lambs, (initial BW = 29.72±1.15 kg, age = 6.54±0.32 mo) were used as experimental animals in a digestion trial. They were fed the same diets as in Exp. 1.

RESULTS:

The supplementation of PRO did not result in any significant differences in milk intake, average daily gain (ADG), or total gain between treatments during the pre-weaning period. Total dry matter intake tended to be greater (p = 0.07) with addition of PRO in the post-weaning diets. During post-weaning phase, the final BW, ADG, total gain, and feed conversion ratio of the lambs receiving PRO treatments tended to be greater (p≤0.10) than the control group. Addition of PRO in post-weaning diet decreased (p≤0.01) blood urea and cholesterol concentrations. With the exception of ether extract digestibility, all nutrients digestibility were improved with inclusion PRO in the post-weaning diets.

CONCLUSION:

Lambs that received PRO in post-weaning diet appeared to show a better performance than lambs in pre-weaning period. Addition of the probiotic in the post-weaning diet trended towards improved dry matter intake, growth performance, feed conversion ratio, and nutrients digestibility.

KEYWORDS:

Digestibility; Growth Performance; Lamb; Probiotic

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