The study was planned to investigate the effects of dried citrus pulp on nutrient intake, digestibility, nitrogen balance, blood metabolites, growth performance and economics in Nilli Ravi buffalo calves. Twenty buffalo male calves of 18 to 24 months of age having 200 to 250 kg body weight were used in a randomized complete block design. Four iso-caloric and iso-nitrogenous diets containing 5, 10, 15 and 20% dried citrus pulp were formulated. The experiment lasted for adaptation period while last five days of each month served as collection period. Feed was offered ad libitum twice a day. Animals were weighed fortnightly before morning feeding to assess their growth performance. The results showed non-significant effects of various levels of dried citrus pulp on nutrient intake and digestibility. Nitrogen metabolism was also remained unaltered among the treatments. There were non-significant differences in weight gain and blood metabolites in calves fed various levels of dried citrus pulp. However, a linear reduction in price per kg diet was observed as the level of dried citrus pulp was increased from 5 to 20% in the diet. The study showed that dried citrus pulp can be used successfully up to 20% in the diet of calves without any ill effect on feed intake, digestibility and growth performance.
Key words: Buffalo calves, citrus pulp, economics, growth performance.
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