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Animals 2019, 9(3), 110; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9030110

Effects of Different Dietary Calcium Levels on the Performance, Egg Quality, and Albumen Transparency of Laying Pigeons

Poultry Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Yangzhou 225100, China
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Received: 13 February 2019 / Revised: 9 March 2019 / Accepted: 13 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Poultry)
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Simple Summary

The transparency of pigeon egg albumen is a special phenotypic trait that different from other poultry eggs, and calcium is one of the main factors. This experiment aimed to study the effects of added dietary Ca on production performance, egg quality, and albumen transparency. It will guide producers on how to feed their laying pigeons and provide a scientific basis for special feed research and the development of laying pigeons with transparent eggs.

Abstract

In order to confirm the dietary calcium (Ca) requirement to keep a balance of the production performance and the albumen transparency, the study examined the effects of different dietary Ca levels on the production performance, egg quality, and albumen transparency of laying pigeons. 1080 pigeon pairs were randomly allocated into six treatment groups, each consisting of six replicates of 30 pigeon pairs per treatment. Ca levels of 0.60, 0.90, 1.20, 1.80, 2.40, and 3.00% were fed. The results showed that the laying rate, average egg weight, and feed to egg ratio were significantly influenced by Ca levels (p < 0.05). Albumen percentage, albumen height, Haugh unit, and eggshell thickness at 8 w and 16 w were significantly influenced by Ca levels (p < 0.05). The L*, a*, b*, and c* values of cooked albumen at 8 w and 16 w were all significantly influenced by Ca levels (p < 0.05). After 16 w of feeding different Ca levels, the percentage of transparent eggs had an early increasing and later decreasing trend. In conclusion, taking the transparency of pigeon eggs as an assessment index and considering production performance secondly, the optimal level of dietary Ca for laying White King pigeons is 0.90%. View Full-Text
Keywords: laying pigeon; calcium level; performance; egg quality; albumen transparency laying pigeon; calcium level; performance; egg quality; albumen transparency
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Chang, L.; Zhang, R.; Fu, S.; Mu, C.; Tang, Q.; Bu, Z. Effects of Different Dietary Calcium Levels on the Performance, Egg Quality, and Albumen Transparency of Laying Pigeons. Animals 2019, 9, 110.

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