The study investigated the effects of supplementing concentrate diets of rabbits with Gmelina, Neem, Leucaena combined w/w with Moringa leaf meals on their growth performance. Four dietary treatments consisting of forage and concentrate were formulated alongside with the control diet (without supplement). Twenty-four weaner rabbits of both sexes equal in numbers of males and females were used for the experiment for a period of 12 weeks. The growth experiment was subjected to 4 x 2 factorial experiment in completely randomized design consisting of four experimental diets and two (2) sexes. Proximate composition of the experimental diets, weekly weight gain, feed intake, feed consumption and feed conversion ratio of the rabbits were assessed. As revealed from the findings, the crude protein, crude fat and crude fiber ranged from 9.36% to 36.73%; 6.75% to 11.58%; and 20.12% to 30.24% respectively, while the carbohydrate, ash and moisture content ranged between 57.90% and 73.27%; 6.20% and 17.75%; and 7.76% and 8.20% respectively. The statistical analysis revealed that the experimental treatments had significant effects on the growth rate, feed consumption and feed conversion ratio of the rabbits (p?0.05). A strong positive and significant relationship (0.01 level) was observed between feed consumption and growth rate of the rabbit. The results of the finding suggest that the inclusion of the Moringa forage leaves in the experimental diets favoured the growth performance of the rabbits in terms of growth rate, feed consumption and feed conversion ratio of rabbits.
This study is one of very few studies which have investigated, the effects of supplementing concentrate diets of rabbits with mixed foliage augmented Moringa leaf meal and other foliage leafy meals including Gmelina, Neem, Leucaena on optimum growth performance within the shortest possible time.
This study received no specific financial support.
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
F.B.C. conceived the research idea, wrote the original draft manuscript, analysed the data, reviewed and edited the manuscript; A.O.O participated in the review and editing of the manuscript as well as the supervision of the research survey; S.S. and U.H.S. conducted the research, collected the research data and contributed to the writing of the manuscript.