The effect of different levels of Acorn seeds on laying hens performance in first phase of egg production
The experiment was conducted over 12 weeks period with one hundred and sixty 24 weeks old white leghorn hens. Diets containing 0, 10, 20 and 30% acorn seeds of Quercus branti were given to caged laying hens in first phase of egg production (weeks 24-36). Egg weight, feed intake, mortality rate and body weight were not significantly affected by the treatments, but egg production rate, egg number, egg mass by P<0.01 and feed efficiency with P<0.05 were affected by the experimental diets. It could be concluded that treatment containing 30% acorn seeds significantly reduced egg production rate, egg number, egg mass, and feed efficiency in first phase of egg production (weeks 24-36). But acorn seeds could be used in the diet of laying hens in place of corn up to 20% with no serious adverse effects onperformance.