MEKARN Workshop 2008: Organic rabbit production from forages
Two experiments were conducted in the experimental farm of Nong Lam University to evaluate the effects of cabbage by-products from market on growing crossbred rabbits. In the digestibility trial, four local and four New Zealand White female rabbits are allocated to 4 experimental treatments according to a duplicate 4*4 Latin square arrangement with replacement of cabbage by-products: 0 (CBP0), 25 (CBP25), 50 (CBP50) and 75% in dry matter (CBP75) of water spinach based diets to examine the effect of cabbage by-products on digestibility of rabbit fed water spinach. In the growing trial, twenty four, sixty-days old, crossbred female rabbits were allocated to complete randomized designs with four treatments, three replicates and two female rabbits per experimental units to determine the level of CBP replaced of water spinach in the diet of growing rabbits. Four treatments of the second experiment were the same in the first experiment.
In experiment 1, the apparent digestibility (%) of DM was significantly higher (P>0.05) in the diets that included CBP compared with CBP0, with the highest value in the CBP75. The nitrogen retention tended to decrease with increasing levels of CBP (P>0.05), and lowest value was found in the CBP75 diet. In experiment 2, the dry matter intake (DM) was similar on the diets with CBP and CBP0. Crude protein (CP) and NDF intakes were significantly lower (P<0.001) in the CBP50 and CBP75 diets. Ether extract (EE) and ADF intakes were significantly higher (P<0.001) in the CBP50 and CBP75 diets. The highest daily gain and feed conversion rate (FCR) was found in CBP50 diet (P<0.01). It was concluded that replacement of CBP at level of 50% in dry matter of water spinach based diets gave better daily gain and FCR.