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Iyeghe-Erakpotobor et al., 2008. Livest. Res. Rur. Dev., 20 (11): 178

Document reference 
Iyeghe-Erakpotobor, G. T. ; Adeosun, Y. G. ; Sekoni, A. A. ; Esievo, L. O., 2008. Reproductive performance of rabbit does on concentrate to forage (Stylosanthes hamata) combinations. Livest. Res. Rur. Dev., 20 (11): 178

Nulliparous New Zealand White X California crossbred does were used to study the utilization of concentrate and Stylosanthes hamata (stylo) combinations by breeding does during pregnancy and lactation. The treatments comprised the following concentrate and stylo combinations (%) respectively: (1) 20:80, (2) 40:60, (3) 60:40 and (4) 80:20. The concentrate (22% CP and 2600kcal ME/kg) used was routinely fed to the rabbits. Concentrate and stylo were fed in the morning at 08.00 hour in separate feeders while clean water was supplied daily in earthen pots. The does were mated to intact bucks after a two weeks adjustment period.  Results indicated total feed intake during pregnancy was higher for treatment 40:60 than 20:80. Feed intake was lower for 20:80 and 40:60 than 60:40 treatment. Total feed intake during lactation was higher for 20:80 and 40:60 treatments than 60:40 and 20:80 treatments. Relative feed intake increased during pregnancy but decreased during lactation with increase in concentrate level. Relative feed intake was 65-81% during pregnancy and 75-59% during lactation. Doe weight gain showed progressive increase during pregnancy and lactation with periods when does maintained their weight. Kindling rate was highest on 60:40 (90%) and lowest on 20:80 and 80:20 (45%) treatments. Litter size at birth, alive at birth, litter weights, kit weight at weaning and litter gain was similar for all treatments. Percent stillbirth was higher for 60:40 and 80:20 treatments than for 20:80 and 40:60 treatments while kit mortality was high for 60:40, 40:60 and 80:20.  It is concluded from this study that does on 60:40 concentrate:stylo combination had overall better performance in terms of feed intake, kindling rate and litter size.

Citation key 
Iyeghe-Erakpotobor et al., 2008