Effect of Feeding Neem (Azadirachta indica) Kernel Meal on Growth, Nutrient Utilization and Physiology of Japanese Quails (Coturnix cotrnix japonica)

  • Elangovan, A.V. (Nutrition and Feed Technology Division, Central Avian Research Institute) ;
  • Verma, S.V.S. (Nutrition and Feed Technology Division, Central Avian Research Institute) ;
  • Sastry, V.R.B. (Indian Veterinary Research Institute) ;
  • Singh, S.D. (Indian Veterinary Research Institute)
  • Received : 1999.11.10
  • Accepted : 2000.03.02
  • Published : 2000.09.01


The present study was conducted to investigate the feasibility of feeding neem kernel meal (NKM) containing diet to growing Japanese quails, which was incorporated into a standard quail diet at 0, 50, 75 or 100 g/kg in place of soyabean meal and deoiled rice bran. Each diet was offered to 30 quail chicks housed in battery cages from day one to five weeks of age. The chicks fed NKM diets gained 123.3, 122.6 and 121.6 g mean body weight, respectively, and which were significantly (p<0.05) lower than that of 129.9 g gained by those of birds fed the control diets. The feed intake and feed conversion ratio of birds in different dietary groups were not significantly altered due to dietary variations. Mean values for retention of dietary energy, N and Ca were found to insignificantly differ (p>0.05) among the treatment groups but P retention was significantly (p<0.01) lower for quails fed 100 g/kg NKM than those in other groups. Blood biochemical constituents, carcass characteristics and organoleptic test for meat also were not found to vary significantly (p>0.05) due to dietary treatments. The histopathology of liver and kidney tissues from NKM fed quails revealed mild degenerative changes. It could be concluded that inclusion of NKM in quail diet reduced the growth besides inducing mild pathological changes in liver and kidney tissues.