Bulgarian Journal of Agricultural Science
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Effect of inclusion insect meals in feed on performance, blood biochemical and immune parameters of layer hens
Mitko Lalev, Nadya Mincheva, Pavlina Hristakieva, Ivelina Ivanova, Magdalena Oblakova
Abstract: The utilization of sustainable, ecologically friendly and high-quality substitutes of soybean meal for feeding poultry becomes increasingly popular. With this regard, the present study investigated the effect of two types of insect meals – from black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) larvae and silkworm (Bombyx mori) pupae, as source of protein in diets of layer hens on productivity, blood biochemical and immune parameters. A total of 180 hens, 34 weeks of age, from the egg type line T (Rhode Island Red), were distributed in three groups, each with three replicates, 20 hens/replicate. The control group received standard diet with soybean meal, and the two experimental groups were feed rations containing 7% of tested insect meals: black soldier fly meal (BSF), or silkworm pupae meal (SW) throughout 13 weeks. The live weight of birds, feed intake, egg production, egg weight and feed conversion ratio did not differ among the groups (P > 0.05). Blood biochemical profile and immune indexes (serum lysozyme activity and alternative pathway of complement activation) were neither affected (P > 0.05). On the basis of obtained results, it may be concluded that the tested meals from black soldier fly larvae (Hermetia illucens) and silkworm pupae (Bombyx mori), could be successfully used as alternative protein source in the rations of layer hens at dietary levels of 7% without adverse effects on egg production, physiological and immunological status of birds.
Keywords: Black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens); blood profiles; hens; performance; Silkworm (Bombyx mori)
Date published: 2023-10-20
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