Growth Performance, Nutrient Digestibility, Gastrointestinal Tract Traits in Response to Dietary Fiber Sources in Broiler Chickens

Document Type : Original Paper


Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan, Iran


The effects of dietary insoluble fiber sources on growth performance, gastrointestinal tract (GIT) traits, nutrient digestibility and intestinal enzyme activity were studied in broilers from 1 to 42 d of age. A total of 480 one-day-old chicks (Ross 308), were allocated in four treatments, six replicates and 20 birds in each, based on a completely randomized design. Dietary treatments were including a corn-soybean meal basal diet (control diet) and other three diets formulated by the inclusion of 30 g/kg of processed wheat straw (WS), sunflower hulls (SFH), or soybean hulls (SBH) in the control diet. From 1 to 10 d of age, broiler chickens fed processed WS tended to have higher feed intake than broilers fed the control diet (P = 0.064) and had higher body weight gain than broilers fed the other treatments (P < 0.05). The relative weight of the GIT organs was not affected by treatments but SFH and SBH decreased the length of the small intestine at 42 d of age (P < 0.05). The pH of different segments of the GIT, carcass traits, dry matter, nitrogen digestibility, and apparent metabolizable energy corrected by nitrogen were not affected by treatments. The activity of amylase and aminopeptidase in the duodenum and jejunum was not affected by the insoluble fiber sources. In conclusion, the dilution of the control diet with the inclusion of 30 g/kg insoluble fiber did not have any negative effect on broiler chickens' performance and marketing weight. Moreover, improved performance was observed with processed WS, particularly during the starter period.


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