Organic and inorganic selenium in Aseel chicken diets: Effect on hatching traits
A study was conducted to evaluate the effect of dietary selenium (Se) sources (organic and inorganic Se at 0.30 ppm and basal diet at 0 ppm level of supplemented Se) on hatching traits in four varieties of Aseel chicken, Lakha, Mushki, Peshawari, and Mianwali. In total, 84 adult molted hens (50 wk old), 21 from each variety, were randomly assigned to 12 treatment groups in a 3 (Se diets) × 4 (Aseel varieties) factorial arrangement under a randomized complete block design. Each treatment was replicated 7 times with individual hens in each. Settable egg, fertility, hatch of fertile eggs, hatchability, A-grade chick, and embryonic mortality parameters were evaluated. The results indicated that the birds fed an organic Se supplemented diet had greater (P < 0.05) settable eggs, fertility, hatch of fertile eggs, hatchability, and A-grade chicks and reduced embryonic mortality than those fed inorganic or no Se. Among varieties, Mushki had lower (P < 0.05) fertility, hatch of fertile eggs, hatchability, and A-grade chicks than rest of three varieties. Interaction of Se sources and varieties indicated that dietary organic Se supplementation improved (P < 0.05) hatch of fertile eggs in Peshawari and Mianwali, whereas hatchability only in Peshawari variety and reduced embryonic mortality in Mianwali. It was concluded that dietary supplementation of organic Se could be used to improve hatching traits as well as reduce embryonic mortality in native Aseel chicken.