Oguejiofor S Onuh, Cosmas C Ogbu
This study was carried out to evaluate the effect of Ocimum gratissimum leaf extract (OGLE) on growth parameters, fecal oocyst count and haematological indices of broiler chickens exposed to natural infection of coccidian oocysts. A hundred and thirty six day old Anak broilers were used for the experiment. Four dose levels of the extract namely 20, 30, 40 and 0ml per liter of water supplemented ad libitum were used representing four treatment groups (T1-T4) (34 birds/treatment, 17/replication). The control group (T4) received embazine forte(R) (sulfaquinoxaline + vit K) at the rate of 1g per liter of water following manufacturer’s instructions. Birds were exposed at hatch to natural infection by coccidian oocysts through poultry litter. Administration of the test material started on confirmation of coccidiosis 7 days post exposure. Data collected included faecal oocyst count, body weight (BW), feed intake (FI), length of body parts, haematological indices, and weight of internal organs. Treatment effect was significant (P<0.05) for oocyst output, BW, FI, length of body parts and haematological indices. Faecal oocyst output reduced with age inconsistently in the group fed 40ml/l but consistently in the control group. Mortality was 60, 40, 20, and 0% for groups fed 20, 30, 40, and 0ml/l OGLE. Shading of oocysts continued to the end of the study in all treatment groups. The reduced oocyst output at 40ml/l dose level suggested that OGLE could be beneficial for management of coccidiosis in broiler birds.
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