Response of Broiler Chickens to Triticale-Based Diets Supplemented with Microbial Enzymes (2. Microbial Profiles and Activities)

Document Type: Original Paper


1 School of Environmental and Rural Science, University of New England, Armidale, Australia

2 AB Vista, 3 Woodstock Court, Blenheim Road, Marlborough Business Park, Marlborough, UK


The microbial profiles and activities of microbes in the digesta from chickens on diets containing Bogong or Canobolas with or without inclusion of microbial enzymes were investigated on the 384 day-old male Ross 308 broiler chickens. There was a reduction in population of C. perfringens (P < 0.01) of the ileum as a result of interaction between cultivar and xylanase. On the other hand, in the ceca, the population of entero bacteria were reduced (P < 0.01) by the interaction between grain and phytase, as well as the interaction between grain, xylanase and phytase. Also, the inclusion of xylanase reduced the population of C. perfringensin the ceca. The cecal concentration of acetic acid (P < 0.05) and butyric plus isobutyric acid (P <0.01) was increased in birds received Bogong and Canobolas diets.  Supplementation of xylanase in Bogong diets increased (grain x xylanase, P< 0.05) the acetic acid and lactic acid concentration in ceca while the reversed was the case for Canobolas diets. The ileal and cecal pH was not affected by grain, the inclusion of xylanase and phytase or interactions between these factors. It can be concluded that diets containing Bogong or Canobolas diets supplemented with phytase and xylanase influenced the microbial profile and their activities in gastrointestinal tract which may be due to the variation in nutrient content of these two cultivars.


Antoniou T & Marquardt RR. 1981. Influence of rye pentosans on the growth of chicks. Poultry Science, 60: 1898-1904. DOI: 10.3382/ps.0601898

Apajalahti J, Kettunnen A & Graham H. 2004. Characteristics of the gastrointestinal microbial communities, with special reference to the chicken. World’s Poultry Science Journal, 60: 223–232. DOI: 10.1079/WPS200415

Aviagen. 2007. ROSS 308 BROILER: Nutrition Spesification. Newbridge, Midlothian EH28 8SZ, Scotland, UK.

Bedford MR. 2000. Removal of antibiotic growth promoters from poultry diets: implications and strategies to minimise subsequent problems. World’s Poultry Science Journal, 56: 347-365. DOI: 10.1079/WPS20000024

Bedford MR, & Schulze H. 1998. Exogenous enzymes for pigs and poultry. Nutrition Research Review, 11: 91–114. DOI: 10.1079/NRR19980007

Bjerrum L, Pedersen K & Engberg RM. 2005. The influence of whole wheat feeding on salmonella infection and gut flora composition in broilers. Avian Disease, 49: 9-15. DOI: 10.1637/7223-061504R

Choct M, Hughes RJ & Bedford MR. 1999. Effects of a xylanase on individual bird variation, starch digestion throughout the intestine, and ileal and caecal volatile fatty acid production in chickens fed wheat. British Poultry Science, 40: 419-422. DOI: 10.1080/00071669987548

Corrier DE, Hinton AJr, Ziprin RL, Beier RC & DeLoach JR. 1990. Effect of dietary lactose on cecal pH, bacteriostatic volatile fatty acids, and Salmonella typhimurium colonization of broiler chicks. Avian Disease, 34: 617-625.DOI: 10.2307/1591254

Crouch J & Saunders R. 2009. Triticale Overview: New varieties lead in triticale trials.

Engberg RM, Hedemann MS & Jensen BB. 2002. The influence of grinding and pelleting of feed on the microbial composition and activity in the digestive tract of broiler chickens. British Poultry Science, 43: 569-579. DOI: 10.1080/0007166022000004480

Engberg RM, Hedemann MS, Steenfeldt S & Jensen BB. 2004. Influence of whole wheat and xylanase on broiler performance and microbial composition and activity in the digestive tract. Poultry Science, 83: 925-938. DOI: 10.1080/0007166022000004480

Jamroz D, Jakobsen K, Bach Knudsen KE, Wiliczkiewicz A & Orda J. 2002. Digestibility and energy value of non-starch polysaccharides in young chickens, ducks and geese, fed diets containing high amounts of barley. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology, 131: 657-668. DOI: 10.1016/S1095-6433(01)00517-7

Jensen MT, Cox RP & Jensen BB. 1995. Microbial production of skatole in the hind gut of pigs given different diets and its relation to skatole deposition in back fat. Animal Science, 61: 293-304. DOI: 10.1017/S1357729800013837

Józefiak D, Rutkowski A, Fratczak M & Boros D. 2004a. The effect of dietary fibre fractions from different cereals and microbial enzyme supplementation on performance, ileal viscosity and short-chain fatty acid concentrations in the caeca of broiler chickens. Journal of Animal Feed Sciences, 13: 487-496. DOI: 10.22358/jafs/67618/2004

Józefiak D, Rutkowski A & Martin SA. 2004b. Carbohydrate fermentation in the avian ceca: a review. Animal Feed Science and Technology, 113: 1-15. DOI: 10.1016/j.anifeedsci.2003.09.007

Hubener K, Vahjen W & Simon O. 2002. Bacterial responses to different dietary cereal types and xylanase supplementation in the intestine of broiler chicken. Archiv fur Tierernahrung, 56: 167-187. DOI: 10.1080/00039420214191

Komisarczuk S, Merry RJ & McAllan AB. 1987. Effect of different levels of phosphorus on rumen microbial fermentation and synthesis determined using a continuous culture technique. British Journal of Nutrition, 57: 279–290. DOI: 10.1079/BJN19870033

McHan F & Shotts EB. 1993. Effect of short-chain fatty acids on the growth of Salmonella typhimurium in an in vitro system. Avian Disease, 37: 396-398. DOI: 10.1111/1523-1747.ep12551667

Metzler-Zebeli BU, Mosenthin R. Baumgärtel T & Rodehutscord M. 2008. The effect of dietary phosphorus and calcium level, phytase supplementation and ileal infusion of pectin on the chemical composition and carbohydrase activity of fecal bacteria and the level of microbial metabolites in the gastrointestinal tract of pigs. Journal ofAnimal Science, 86: 1544–1555. DOI: 10.2527/jas.2007-0267

Metzler-Zebeli BU, Vahjen W, Baumgartel T, Rodehutscord M & Mosenthin R. 2010. Ileal microbiota of growing pigs fed different dietary calcium phosphate levels and phytase content and subjected to ileal pectin infusion. Journal of Animal Science, 88: 147-158. DOI: 10.2527/jas.2008-1560

Miller TL & Wolin MJ. 1974. A serum bottle modification of the Hungate technique for cultivating obligate anaerobes. Applied Microbiology, 27: 985-987.

Minitab. 2010. Minitab 16. Statistical Software. Minitab Inc. State College. Pennsylvania, USA.

Ptak A, Bedford MR, Swiatkiewicz S, Zyla K & Jozefiak D. 2015. Phytase modulates ileal microbiota and enhances growth performance of the broiler chickens. PLOS One, 10: e0119770. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0119770.

Ricke S. 2003. Perspectives on the use of organic acids and short chain fatty acids as antimicrobials. Poultry Science, 82: 632-639. DOI: 10.1093/ps/82.4.632

Russell JB. 1992. Another explanation for the toxicity of fermentation acids at low pH: anion accumulation versus uncoupling. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 73: 363-370. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2672.1992.tb04990.x

Silva SSP & Smithard RR.  2002. Effect of enzyme supplementation of a rye-based diet on xylanase activity in the small intestine of broilers, on intestinal crypt cell proliferation and on nutrient digestibility and growth performance of the birds. British Poultry Science, 43: 274-282. DOI: 10.1080/0007166012012150

Smulikowska S, Czerwiński J& Mieczkowska A. 2010. Effect of an organic acid blend and phytase added to arapeseed cake-containing diet on performance, intestinal morphology, caecal microflora activity andthyroid status of broiler chickens. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, 94: 15–23. DOI: 10.1111/j.1439-0396.2008.00876.x

van der Wielen PWJJ, Biesterveld S, Notermans S, Hofstra H, Urlings BAP & Van Knapen F. 2000. Role of volatile fatty acids in development of the cecal microflora in broiler chickens during growth. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 66: 2536-2540. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.66.6.2536-2540.2000

Widodo AE, O’Neill HM & Iji PA. 2011. Energy utilization and productivity of broiler chickens on diets containing triticale and supplemented with microbial enzymes. Australasian Medical Journal, 4: 739.

Widodo AE, Nolan JV & Iji PA. 2015. The nutritional value of new varieties of high-yielding triticale: Feeding value of triticale for broiler chickens.  South African Journal of Animal Science, 45: 74-81. DOI: 10.4314/sajas.v45i1.9