Protein Requirements for Growing and Laying Indigenous Guinea Fowls (Numida Meleagris) in the Humid Tropical Zone of Ghana

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This study was undertaken to assess the dietary crude protein (CP) concentrations required by growing and laying indigenous guinea fowls (Numida meleagris) for optimum growth performance. A 28- week experiment was divided into two phases namely, growing phase and laying phase. One hundred and eighty (180) nine- week old pearl guinea fowl growers were randomly assigned to experimental diets with 16, 18, 20 and 22% CP, from 9 to 27 weeks of age for the growing phase. During the laying phase, 28 to 36 weeks, 120 pearl guinea fowl pullets were randomly assigned to diets containing 15, 16, 17 and 18% CP. All the eight rations in both experiments one and two were isocaloric, having ME of 12.30 MJ/ kg. Each dietary treatment was replicated 3 times, a pre-weighed amount of feed was given and water was provided ad libitum. Feed consumption was measured daily and body weight measured weekly. Mortality was recorded as and when it occurred. Other parameters measured included haematology and biochemical analysis, carcass parameters, age and weight at first lay, weight of first egg and other egg parameters. Results show that diets containing 16% crude protein for growing guinea fowls and 18% crude protein for laying guinea fowls are ideal for optimum growth performance and production.
A thesis submitted to the School of Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the Degree of Master of Science in Animal Nutrition and Management, 2011