Effect of Dietary Salt on acid/base Balance and Overall Performance of Broiler Chicken in the Tropics

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Charles Epiphano, Wani
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The study was carried out to investigate the effect of graded levels (0.0, 0.2, 0.4,0.6, 0.8%) of sodium chloride in broiler diet on acid/base balance measurements pH, H2CO2, Na and K), blood cell PCV, some selected productive traits (feed intake, body weight, feed conversion ratio and mortality), carcass quality (Dressing percentage and water holding capacity), and litter moisture content. The results indicated that sorghum based diets unfortified with NaCl (0.0%) had significantly (P<0.0l) negative effect on feed intake, body weight, feed conversion ratio, dressing percentages, carcass quality, PH value and Plasma HCO3 and Na concentration while plasma K concentration and PCV were significantly increased compared with the other diets. The study also revealed that there was no significant effect on mortality rate or litter moisture content. The best feed utilization and dressing percentages were obtained at salt levels of 0.2 - 0.4%, while the best carcass quality in terms of the WHC was obtained at salt level of 0.8%. This study suggested that inclusion of NaCI in broiler diet from 0.2 - 0.8% caused no detrimental symptoms. It demonstrated that broilers under tropical conditions can tolerate dietary salt up to 0.8% with advantageous results (improved carcass quality via decreased WHC).
Dietary Salt ,acid, Balance,Overall Performance