Turkish Journal of Veterinary & Animal Sciences




This study investigated the effects of stocking density (SD) and ascorbic acid (AA) supplementation on nutrient digestibility and laying performance of quails in a tropical environment. Four hundred and eight Japanese quails were designated in a 3 × 2 factorial arrangement with four replicates. The birds were distributed to three SDs, namely 40 (SD-1), 45 (SD-2), and 50 birds per m2 (SD-3) by allotting 15, 17, and 19 birds per cage, respectively (cage size: 3750 cm2). Each SD was supplemented with AA (0 and 250 mg/kg). Interaction was identified between SD and AA on egg production (P < 0.01), while the highest value was yielded in SD-2 supplemented with AA (83.6%). SD-3 achieved lower ether extract (EE) and crude fiber (CF) digestibility (P < 0.05) and eggshell thickness (P = 0.01) than SD-1 or SD-2. AA supplementation enhanced dry matter (DM), EE, CF, crude ash (CA), and calcium (Ca) digestibility (P < 0.05). AA improved egg weight, feed conversion, and protein and energy efficiency ratios as well as eggshell weight and thickness (P < 0.05). The SD of 45 birds per m2, combined with AA supplementation at 250 mg/kg, can be recommended for quails housed in hightemperature environments.

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