R. Bras. Zootec.01/Jan/2016;45(1):01-7.
Effects of calcium to non-phytate phosphorus ratio and different sources of vitamin D on growth performance and bone mineralization in broiler chickens
ABSTRACT – A 7 × 2 factorial experiment was designed to test the effects of calcium (Ca) to non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) ratio (1.14, 1.43, 1.71, 2.00, 2.29, 2.57, and 2.86) and different sources of vitamin D (1α-hydroxycholecalciferol (1α-OH-D3) and 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (25-OH-D3)) on growth performance and bone mineralization in 1- to 42-d-old broiler chickens. On the day of hatch, 700 female Ross 308 broilers were weighed and randomly assigned to 14 treatments with five stainless steel cages of 10 birds each. Dietary Ca levels were 4.0, 5.0, 6.0, 7.0, 8.0, 9.0, and 10.0 g kg−1 and the NPP content was 3.5 g kg−1. The dose of 1α-OH-D3 or 25-OH-D3 was 5 µg kg−1. Diets were not supplemented with cholecalciferol (vitamin D3). Results showed that the Ca to NPP ratio, vitamin D source, and their interaction affected body weight gain (BWG), feed intake (FI), feed efficiency (FE), and carcass and breast yields, as well as tibia weight and length and ash weight in broiler chickens from 1 to 42 d of age. Broilers fed 1α-OH-D3 had higher BWG and FI as well as tibia breaking strength, weight, length, diameter, and ash weight than birds fed 25-OH-D3 at 42 d of age. The Ca to NPP ratio had a quadratic effect on BWG, FI, mortality, as well as tibia breaking strength, weight, length, ash weight, and ash and P contents in 42-d-old broilers. Broiler chickens at 42 d of age obtain optimal growth performance and bone mineralization at the Ca to NPP ratio of 2.32 when 1α-OH-D3 or 25-OH-D3 are used as the vitamin D source.