Improved methods for broiler chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) litter utilization are needed to alleviate potential impacts of pollution around broiler production operations. Pelletization may constitute one improved method for handling broiler litter. The objective of this study was to determine the change in nutrient concentration from pelletizing broiler litter, and determine availability of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from pelletized broiler litter in a greenhouse experiment. Ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum Lam.) and sorghum-sudangrass (Sorghum bicolor L. Moench) were grown to determine dry matter accumulation and uptake of N and P. Cumulative data for all cuttings showed that pelletized broiler litter had lower uptake of N and P compared to inorganic N and P. Dry biomass production from pellets was less than ammonium nitrate (NH4NO3) in the N experiment. Biomass production from pellets was similar to calcium phosphate (CaHPO4) for the P experiment. This indicates pelletized broiler litter can serve as N and P sources for plants. However, N and P in broiler litter pellets may not be as available as that from inorganic fertilizer.
Key words: Pelletization, bioavailability, broiler litter, yield, uptake.
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