Jerusalem artichoke (Helinathus tuberosus) tops as a natural source of inulin in rabbit diet: effect on growth performance and health status
2019, 20 (3) p. 796-801
Nowadays, both many scientists and breeders are interested in the possibilities of the substitution of allopathic medicinal products for animals by some natural alternatives, as plants products, prebiotics or probiotics. Jerusalem artichoke contains non-starch polysaccharide inulin, which can be used, because of its specific properties, as a natural prebiotic. The aim of this study was to incorporate Jerusalem artichoke tops to the feed mixture of growing rabbits as the natural source of inulin. 80 Hyla rabbits were randomly divided into 2 groups. The control group was fed standard diet, while Jerusalem artichoke group was given diet with 20% tops of Jerusalem artichoke. The experiment took place in commercial farm with standard conditions and was conducted as a preliminary examination, the growth performance and mortality of rabbits were observed. The diet with 20% tops of Jerusalem artichoke decreased feed conversion ratio about 0.39 (11%) and the mortality of rabbits about 10% (P<0.05) compared with control group. Jerusalem artichoke tops (20%) may be incorporated to rabbit diets as an appropriate source of carbohydrates with prebiotic properties for growing rabbits and thus may partly replaces some ingredients (starch sources), which burden the not completely developed digestive system of young animals.