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The effect of dietary crude protein and potassium on water intake and excretion by turkeys

Study to improve understanding of the importance of protein and potassium in water intake and excretion by growing turkeys.

Year of Publication2011

Wet litter is a multifactorial problem. It is likely that the EU-wide ban on feeding animal protein to poultry and the resultant use of vegetable protein sources has increased the risk of wet litter. Soybean meal (SBM) is the main vegetable protein used in poultry diets and compared to animal proteins, SBM contains more potassium (Kþ) and non-starch polysaccharides. It also, may contain trypsin inhibitors, and have a relatively low protein and fat digestibility. These factors can cause a change in the normal gut flora, provoking sticky droppings and polydipsia. Studies have reported on the effect of crude protein (CP) content on water intake (WI) and excretion but may not always distinguish between the effects of CP and the potentially confounding effects of Kþ. As SBM contains significant amounts of Kþ the concentration of this mineral increase as the protein concentration increases. The aim of this study was to improve understanding of the importance of protein and potassium in water intake and excretion by growing turkeys.

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Supporting the development of the national rural economy.

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