Effects of Lowering the Dietary Levels of Energy, Protein and Amino Acid (Methionine and Cysteine) on the Performance of Laying Hens

  • Received : 2017.02.15
  • Accepted : 2017.06.05
  • Published : 2017.06.30


The purpose of our study was to determine the effects of varying levels of energy, protein, and amino acids on the performances of laying hens. A total of 240 Hy-Line Brown laying hens at 36 weeks of age were used in this 4-week feeding trial. The hens were randomly allocated to five treatment diets, with eight replications of six hens in each replicate cage. The treatment diets were as follows: A- basal diet + 18% crude protein, metabolizable energy 2,800 kcal, total (methionine + cysteine) 0.65%; B- basal diet + 17% crude protein, metabolizable energy 2,700 kcal, total (methionine + cysteine) 0.59%; C- basal diet + 16.5% crude protein, metabolizable energy 2,700 kcal, total (methionine + cysteine) 0.59%; D- basal diet + 16.5% crude protein, metabolizable energy 2,700 kcal, total (methionine + cysteine) 0.54%; and E- basal diet + 16% crude protein, metabolizable energy 2,680 kcal, total (methionine + cysteine) 0.54%. The study results revealed that the hen-day egg production of hens that were fed with low-energy diets (B, C, and D) was comparable with that of hens fed with high-energy diet A, whereas average daily feed intake in hens fed treatment diet D and E was significantly higher (P<0.05) than that in hens fed treatment diet A. Overall, the eggshell thickness was unaffected by any of the treatment diets. Egg weight was comparable among the treatment diets, except for treatment diet E. Haugh unit improved with decreasing levels of dietary energy, protein, and methionine + cysteine in the diet. We can summarize that laying hens fed with low dietary energy and low crude protein treatment diets B, C, and D had satisfactory performance compared with those fed with high-energy treatment diet A. This indicates that there is the potential to reduce feed costs by formulating diets with lower energy and low protein levels.


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