Inclusion of kaolin in the feed of Japanese quails during the production phase
Background: Kaolin may improve quail performance by maintaining intestinal integrity and improving nutrient absorption. Objective: To evaluate the overall performance, egg quality, moisture, nitrogen and calcium content in the excreta, intestinal morphology and financial analysis of kaolin in Japanese quail feed during the production phase. Methods: A total of 192 Japanese quails, distributed in a completely randomized design with four treatments and six repetitions with eight birds each, were used. Kaolin levels added to the diet were 0, 1.5, 3.0, and 4.5%. Results: Kaolin reduced feed consumption. Additionally, egg production, feed conversion and viability increased. Moisture, nitrogen and calcium in the excreta decreased. Height and width of the intestinal villi increased with increasing levels of kaolin in the diet. Kaolin had no effect on egg quality. Inclusion level of 1.5% kaolin allowed for greater economic gains. Conclusion: Kaolin improved performance, intestinal morphology, and reduced the moisture, nitrogen and calcium contents in the excreta. Egg quality remained unchanged with the addition of kaolin, and the best economic response resulted with the addition 1.5% kaolin.
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