Revista MVZ Córdoba
Print version ISSN 0122-0268
MACOME, Felicidade et al. Productive performance and carcass characteristics of lambs fed diets containing different levels of palm kernel cake. Rev.MVZ Cordoba [online]. 2011, vol.16, n.3, pp. 2659-2667. ISSN 0122-0268.
Objective. The objective of this study was to determine the effect on productive performance and carcass characteristics in lambs fed with different amounts of palm kernel cake. Material and methods. Thirty-two Santa Inês lambs, with an initial live body weight of 24.8 ± 3.59 kg were used. Treatments consisted of four levels (0; 6.5; 13.0 and 19.5%) of palm kernel cake added to the dry matter diet. Lambs were fed for 80 days, and then slaughtered to be evaluated for the quantitative characteristics of the carcass. Results. Intake of dry matter and non-structural carbohydrates decreased with increasing levels of palm kernel cake. The intake of neutral detergent fiber showed a linear increase. Crude protein and total digestive nutrient intake were not affected. Weight gain, and the feed:gain ratio of dry matter, organic matter, crude protein and total digestive nutrients were similar among the four treatments. There was an increase on the feed:gain ratio of neutral detergent fiber and a decrease of nonstructural carbohydrates. The weight gain at slaughter and biometric measures were not affected by treatment. The carcass compactness index showed a linear decrease. The indexes of leg muscularity, compactness of the leg and rib eye area were similar among treatments. There was a linear decrease in the cold carcass weight and commercial yield of the carcass. Conclusions. The diet made of up to 19.5% palm kernel cake reduced DM intake, the carcass compactness index and carcass commercial yield, but did not alter weight gain, or feed dry matter intake.
Keywords : Carcasses; diet; feed conversion; palm kernel cake.