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South African Journal of Animal Science

On-line version ISSN 2221-4062
Print version ISSN 0375-1589


BOZKURT, M.; KUCUKYıLMAZ, K.; CATLı, A.U.  and  CıNAR, M.. The effect of single or combined dietary supplementation of prebiotics, organic acid and probiotics on performance and slaughter characteristics of broilers. S. Afr. j. anim. sci. [online]. 2009, vol.39, n.3, pp.197-205. ISSN 2221-4062.

A study was conducted to investigate the effect of dietary supplementation of an organic acid, a probiotic or a prebiotic alone or the prebiotic combined with the organic acid or the probiotic on the performance and slaughter characteristics of broiler chickens fed a maize-soya based diet. The six dietary treatments were: a basal diet (negative control) and diets containing 0.5 g mannan oligosaccharide/kg (prebiotic), or 1.0 g formic acid/kg (organic acid), or a probiotic at 0.5 g/kg, or 0.5 g prebiotic/kg + 1.0 g organic acid/kg, or 0.5 g prebiotic/kg + 0.5 g probiotic/kg feed. Each treatment consisted of eight pens with 50 birds per pen (25 male + 25 female). All dietary supplements, alone and in combination improved live weight significantly at both 21 and 42 days of age compared with the control. However, combinations of the prebiotic with either the organic acid or the probiotic had no additive benefit at 21 and 42 days of age in comparison with the prebiotic alone. The feed intake of the birds was significantly increased with prebiotic supplementation at day 21, but not at day 42. Organic acid significantly improved feed conversion ratio at day 21. The combination of prebiotic and probiotic significantly improved the feed conversion ratio at both 21 and 42 days in comparison with the control. At days 21 and 42 bird mortality was significantly higher in the treatments containing organic acid and organic acid with the prebiotic. In the female birds no slaughter traits were affected by dietary treatments. However, liver weight as a percentage of live weight in the male birds was significantly lowered with prebiotic and probiotic supplementation. Prebiotic supplementation with organic acid resulted in a significantly lower weight of the small intestines compared with the control. In general, the different feed additive regimens that include the prebiotic, probiotic, organic acid, prebiotic with organic acid and prebiotic with probiotic improved the growth rate of the birds significantly compared to the control treatment. The significant improvement in feed conversion ratio when the prebiotic and probiotic were supplemented together suggests a synergism between them.

Keywords : Prebiotic; organic acid; probiotic; broiler; performance; slaughter characteristics.

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