Graded quantities of 1.38, 2.76 and 4.14 g/kg L-methionine were included in a control diet formulated to contain 3.07 g/kg digestible methionine. Each of the 4 dietary treatments was offered to 6 replicate cages (initially 8 birds per cage) from 1 to 21 d post–hatch. The parameters assessed included growth performance, nutrient utilisation (apparent metabolisable energy [AME], AME:GE ratios, N retention, N-corrected apparent metabolisable energy [AMEn]), apparent digestibility coefficients and disappearance rates of amino acids in the distal ileum. They also included free amino concentrations in systemic plasma (brachial vein) at 20 d post–hatch and in hepatic tissue at 14 and 21 d post–hatch. Graded L-methionine inclusions quadratically influenced weight gain (r = 0.688; P = 0.001) and FCR (r = 0.780; P < 0.001). It may be deduced from the quadratic regressions that 3.43 g/kg L-methionine supported maximum weight gain of 1,036 g/kg and 3.50 g/kg L-methionine minimum FCR of 1.193, from 1 to 21 d post–hatch. The control diet contained specified levels of 3.07 g/kg digestible methionine and 13.0 g/kg digestible lysine. Thus, an inclusion of 3.465 g/kg L-methionine corresponded to a total of 6.535 g/kg methionine or a methionine-to-lysine ratio of 50.3, which is higher than standard recommendations. The implications of this and other outcomes of the present study are reported and discussed.
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- Amino acid
- Broiler chicken