Effect of varying dietary concentrations of lysine on growth performance of the Pearl Grey guinea fowl

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Abstract

Lysine is the second limiting essential amino acid in poultry nutrition after methionine. Understanding the lysine requirement of poultry is necessary in guiding formulation of least cost diets that effectively meet the nutritional needs of individual birds. The lysine requirement of the Pearl Grey guinea fowl (PGGF) is not known. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess the appropriate lysine levels required for optimal growth attributes of the PGGF. In a 12-week study, 512 one-day-old Pearl Grey guinea keets were weighed individually and randomly assigned to electrically heated battery brooders. Each battery contained 12 compartments housing 15 birds each. Eight diets fed to the experimental birds consisted of corn-soybean meal and contained 0.80 to 1.22 digestible lysine in 0.06% increments. Feed and water were provided at free choice and the diets were replicated twice. Experimental diets contained 3,100 Kcal metabolizable energy (ME)/kg diet and 23% crude protein (CP), 3,150 ME Kcal ME/kg diet and 21% CP, and 3,100 ME/kg and 17% CP, at zero to 4, 5 to 10, and 11 to 12 weeks of age (WOA), respectively. Birds were provided water ad libitum and a 23:1 and 8:16-hr (light:dark) regimen at zero to 8 and 9 to 12 WOA, respectively. Birds were weighed weekly, and body weight gain, feed consumption, and feed conversions were determined. Data were analyzed using the General Linear Model (GLM) procedures of SAS (2002) with dietary lysine as treatment effect. Females responded better to diets containing 1.04 and 0.8% lysine from hatch to 4 and 5 to 12 WOA, respectively. Males responded better to diets containing 1.10 and 0.8% lysine at hatch to 4 WOA and 5 to 12 WOA, respectively. Therefore, we recommend that PGGF females and males be fed diets containing 1.04 and 1.10%, respectively, at hatch to 4 WOA and 0.80% lysine at 5 to 12 WOA. The diets should be supplied in phases.

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