Sorghum, Bajra and Ragi Vis-a-Vis Maize as Energy Sources in Broiler Chicken Diets
Raju M.V.L.N.*, Shyamsunder G., Elangovan A.V., Reddy M.R., Sadagopan V.R., Rao S.V. Rama
Project Directorate on Poultry (ICAR) Rajendranagar, Hyderabad-500 300, India
*Corresponding author: e-mail. email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
The feeding value of sorghum, bajra and ragi vis-a-vis maize was evaluated in commercial broilers. Isocaloric diets having two ME levels, 2500 and 2750 kcal/kg, formulated using separately maize, sorghum, bajra, ground-ragi and unground-ragi in a 2x5 factorial manner, were fed to a total of 300 broiler chicks from one to six weeks of age. Bajra and sorghum improved body weight, feed efficiency, and dry matter metabolizability over maize and ragi. Significant depression in performance was seen with unground-ragi, which was improved by feeding ground-ragi. Performance of broilers was significantly better at 2750 kcal ME/kg feed for all cereals over 2500 kcal. However, low energy diets containing bajra and sorghum were as efficient as high-energy maize diets. No differences in ready to cook yields were recorded but bajra and sorghum significantly increased weights of gizzard lining and abdominal fat On the contrary, gizzard and giblets weights and length of small intestine were more with ragi and low energy diets. It is concluded that bajra and sorghum could totally replace maize, particularly in low energy diets, while unground-ragi was inferior to all other cereals tested.
Sorghum, bajra, ragi, maize, broiler chicken diets.