High feed cost of running urban-animal-agriculture and huge city wastes are challenges of the growing towns in modern Ethiopia. Egg production microenterprise is steadily growing due to its low initial investment and ready market in urban and peri-urban areas. However, cost of egg production is high due to the rising cost of maize, the main feed ingredient in poultry rations. Using banana peels, which forms a great proportion of city waste in Ethiopia, is seen as a way of not only reducing the waste, but also as an alternative low-cost feed supplement that could help enhance egg production by smallholder farmers. This study looked at the effect of feeding banana-peels-powder on weight-gain, eggproduction and profit from rearing improved poultry breeds. Banana peels were air-dried, ground and used to re-formulate existing feed rations. The control was the poultry ration formulated with 52% maize and 48% other ingredients. Then four rations were formulated with 13%, 26%, 39% and 52% banana peels. One hundred, 5-months old Bovans Brown chicken breed were clustered into four blocks based on weight categories. Five treatments were applied randomly to the blocks and replicated five times in a RCBD cage battery system. The chickens were fed with 120g/chicken/day while water was provided ad libitum. Chicken weight and eggs produced were recorded every two weeks and daily, respectively. Whereas weight gain and egg production declined with increase in proportion of banana peels, 25% replacement resulted in a comparable daily weight gain (26.42 gm) to the standard chicken ration (26.76 gm). Increase of banana peels resulted in reduction of weight gain at 17.78, 16.67 and 15.11 gm/ day and egg production at 0.58, 0.4 and 0.22/day/chicken for 50, 75 and 100% replacements respectively.We conclude that 25% banana peels powder in maize-based feed ration gives optimum weight gain and egg production in chickens.
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RUFORUM Working document series
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