Lithothamnium calcareum in the diet of Japanese quails improves the external quality of eggs

Rafael dos Santos Badeca1, Jean Kaique Valentim1, Rodrigo Garófallo Garcia1, Bruna de Souza Eberhart1, Felipe Cardoso Serpa1, Isabelli Dias Brito Pereira2, Gisele Aparecida Felix3, Maria Fernanda de Castro Burbarelli1, Claudia Marie Komiyama1 Elton Bock Correa3 and Alexandre Rodrigo Mendes Fernandes1
1 Universidade Federal da Grande Dourados, Department of Animal Science, UFGD, MS, Brasil
2 Federal University of Mato Grosso, Department of Animal Science, UFMT Cuiabá, MT, Brasil
3 University Center of Grande Dourados, Department of Veterinary Medicine, Unigran, MS, Brazil

Abstract

Badeca, R. S., Valentim, J. K., Garcia, R. G., Eberhart, B. S., Serpa, F. C., Pereira, I. D. B., Felix, G. A., Burbarelli, M. F. C., Komiyama, C. M., Correa, E. B. & Fernandes, A. R. M. (2022). Lithothamnium calcareum in the diet of Japanese quails improves the external quality of eggs. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 28 (3), 494–501

This study aimed to evaluate the use of seaweed Lithothamnium calcareum for Japanese quails to replace the inorganic calcium source commonly used (limestone) and verify its influence on quails’ productive performance and egg quality. A total of 168 Japanese quails were distributed in a completely randomized experimental design, with 4 treatments: control feed and diets containing the inclusion of 3 different levels of calcareous seaweed (10%, 20%, and 30%) to replace limestone. Regarding performance, the lowest feed intake by using the equation was 16.24% of inclusion. The inclusion of calcareous seaweed showed a quadratic effect for the parameters egg weight, albumen height, and albumen weight, and from the derivative of the equations, the best performance point for these variables were obtained at 15.61%, 16.06%, 15.65% respectively. Regarding shell thickness and strength, there was an increasing linear effect (p < 0.05) for the levels used, the higher level of calcareous seaweed in the diet, the greater thickness and force applied to break the shell. The inclusion of 15% of calcareous seaweed flour in Japanese quails’ diet results in heavier eggs and when up to 30% is added there is an increase in shell thickness and strength.

Keywords: calcium; coturniculture; rock flour; organic minerals

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