Document Type : Original Article


1 Animal Production Research Institute, Agricultural Research Center, El-Dokki, Giza, Egypt.

2 Animal Production Research Institute, Agricultural Research Center,. El-Dokki, Giza, Egypt

3 Animal Production Research Institute, Agricultural Research Center,. El-Dokki, Giza, Egypt.


Reproductive trail was conducted to study the effects of two levels of chemically (CTCM) and biologically treated castor meal (BTCM) (replaced 20 or 40% from soybean meal in the diet) on reproductive performance, digestion coefficients, blood constituents and economic efficiency of New Zealand White (NZW) rabbit does. A total number of 40 New Zealand White (NZW) rabbit does age 5 months weighing 2.871  ±  28.97 kg were used. Results indicate that the gestation length, total feed intake, daily feed intake, the change in  body weight of the does during gestation and suckling period were not affected significantly (P≤ 0.05) by different treatments. Milk yield and milk composition were not significantly affected by feeding the experimental diets. Litter size at birth and litter size at weaning of kids, total litter gain, daily weight gain, total weight gain of kid and mortality% of kids were not  significantly (P≥0.05) affected by different treatments. However, litter weight at birth was significantly (P≤0.05) decreased in rabbits fed 40% BTCM and there were significant (P≤0.05) decrease in litter weight at weaning for rabbits fed 40% CTCM and BTCM. The digestion coefficient of CP, CF, EE , NFE and (DCP%), TDN% and DE kcal/kg were significantly lower with 40% BTCM than those of the control, while the other tested diets mostly didn’t significantly differ than those of the control group. Insignificant (P≥0.05) differences were observed in nitrogen balance among the different experimental groups. Plasma concentration values were insignificantly different for rabbits fed different tested diets (except serum urea which significantly decreased when rabbits fed on diets containing 40% BTCM compared with the rabbits fed on control diet and there were significantly decreased in haemoglobin with rabbits fed on diet containing of  40% BTCM compared with those fed on control diet). it can be noticed that rabbist fed on the diets contained CTCM and  BTCM at level 20%  had the best economic return between the experimental groups. It is concluded that chemically treated castor meal or biologically treated castor meal can be used up to 20% in rabbit does as a substitution from soybean meal without adverse effects in does performance, productive traits of kids and improve economic efficiency.


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