Authors: F.O. Abonyi, B.C.O. Omeke, B.N. Marire
Journal: Nigerian Veterinary Journal
This study evaluated the effects on growth and cost benefits of substituting soybean meal (SBM) with blood meal (BM) in diets of weaner pigs. Possible pathogenic bacteria contamination and nutritional contents of the BM were determined prior to feed formulation. Four weaner diets (A, B, C, and D) were formulated such that BM replaced SBM at 0.0 (control), 50.0, 75.0, and 100.0%, and fed to 32 Landrace x Large White weaner pigs at 5 % of their body weight. Feed intake, growth rate, feed conversion ratio (FCR), gain: feed and cost benefit of the diets were determined weekly for 20 weeks. Proximate analysis of the BM was determined after 20 - week study. Bacillus and Staphylococcus species which ranged from 0.00 to 6.70 ± 0.12 x 103cfu/g (Bacillus) and 0.00 to 4.10 ± 0.34 x 103 cfu/g (Staphylococcus) were recovered from the BM. Proximate analysis showed that crude protein increased linearly as BM inclusion increased. Energy, ether extract, phosphorus and calcium contents of diets B, C, and D were not affected by the substitution. There was no significant (P > 0.05) difference in FCR, daily feed intake and gain: feed among the groups. Diet C significantly (P < 0.05) reduced costs per kg diet, improved weight gain and gross margin more than the control. Proximate analysis of the BM after the 20 weeks showed no significant (P > 0.05) difference in its initial nutrient composition. Authors recommend replacement of SBM with 75% BM when formulating weaner pig diet in the tropics.