This study was conducted to determine the effects of inclusion of dry yam peel (YP) on performance characteristics and cost benefits of growing snails. Yam peel was included at 0% (YP1) control, 25% (YP2), 50% (YP3) and 75% (YP4) as replacement for maize fraction of diet of juvenile snails. Each dietary treatment was replicated thrice with 8 snails per replicate in a completely randomized design. Parameters measured were feed intake, weight gain, shell length and width. Feed conversion ratio was calculated. Significant difference was observed in the mean total weight gain (P < 0.05). The highest mean weekly weight gain of 10.25 g was recorded in YP1 which was not significant (P > 0.05) different from YP3. The lowest mean weekly weight gain of 7.26 g was recorded in snail fed highest level of YP in the diet (YP4). The result of feed efficiency shows that snails fed 0.0%YP had the best feed efficiency (P < 0.05) which was almost similar to YP3. The highest dressing percentage of 43.56% was recorded in YP1 (P < 0.05) which was not significantly different from 42.56 and 41.99% in YP2 and YP3 respectively. The highest cost per weight gain of N226.75 was recorded in YP4 while the lowest cost per weight gain of N196.56 was recorded in snail fed diet containing 50% YP as replacement for maize fraction of the diet. It could be concluded that weight gain, feed efficiency and dressing percentage were relatively similar in the snails fed control diet and 50% YP as replacement for maize fraction of the diet and that the lowest cost per weight gain was recorded in YP3 containing 50% YP. Hence maize fraction of the diet of snails could be replaced up to 50% with yam peel for feed cost reduction.
Key words: Cost/weight gain, dressing percentage, feed intake, weight gain, snails, yam peel.
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