Estimation of the optimum digestible lysine level for Cherry Valley ducks

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The aim of the current study was to determine the digestible lysine (DLys) requirement of Cherry Valley ducks from 1 to 14 d and from 15 to 35 d of age. One-day-old male Cherry Valley ducks (n = 320) were divided randomly and evenly into five treatments with 8 replicates of 8 birds. Ducks were fed adequate levels of digestible amino acid but with graded levels of DLys: 0.80, 0.88, 0.96, 1.04, and 1.12% from 1 to 14 d; 0.60, 0.68, 0.76, 0.84, and 0.92% from 15 to 35 d. At 35 d of age, 8 ducks per treatment were slaughtered for evaluating the yields of abdominal fat, subcutaneous fat, breast meat, and leg meat. Additionally, a 7-d metabolizable experiment was conducted with ducks of the same hatch beginning on d 35 (8 ducks per treatment). The results showed that the DLys level in diet had a quadratic relationship both with the average daily gain (ADG) and feed:gain ratio (F/G). According to the quadratic model, an optimum digestible lysine level was 0.948% from 0 to 14 d and 0.758% from 15 to 35 d based on ADG. The digestible lysine level for obtaining minimum F/G were 0.986% (0 ˜ 14 d) and 0.792% (15 ˜ 35 d), respectively. Breast meat yield (P = 0.110) and subcutaneous fat percentage (P = 0.021) showed a quadratic or linear response to the increasing dietary DLys level. To achieve maximum breast meat yield, the digestible lysine level of 0.961% and 0.761% were needed for the starter period (1 ˜ 14 d) and the growth period (14 ˜ 35 d), respectively. N excretion showed a quadratic response to the increasing dietary DLys level (P = 0.103). The results of the current study suggested that the optimum digestible lysine level was very different with the response criterion. The dietary digestible lysine levels were 0.948, 0.961% in the starter period (1 ˜ 14 d) and 0.758, 0.761% in the growth period (15 ˜ 35 d) for ADG, F/G, respectively.

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