11. Use of a natural nutritional supplement in layers for calcium and phosphorus absorption improvement
A deficiency of either calcium or phosphorus in the diet of laying hens results in abnormal bone calcification and reduced eggshell quality.
When calcium is mobilized from the bones to overcome a dietary deficiency, the cortical bone is eroded and unable to support the weight of the hen. For this reason, when having poor calcium and phosphorus diets, it is important to improve the mineral absorption.
A study was conducted in India in 2004 to test the efficiency of pronutrients (promoters of mineral absorption) to improve calcium and phosphorus absorption in layers.Methodology
The animals tested were 72-week-old layers, fed a poor calcium and phosphorus diet.
Batch A: feed that supplies only 20% of the calcium and phosphorus requirements
Batch B: feed that supplies only 20% of the calcium and phosphorus requirements +Â pronutrients
Batch C: feed that supplies only 20% of the calcium and phosphorus requirements +Â phytase
- There were a significant increase in the tibial calcium content of animals supplemented with pronutrients, compared to the calcium content in animals from the control.
- The group with phytase had significantly lower total ashes, which is indicative of a lower mineral content in the tibia. The use of phytase in layers has the following limitations: formation of insoluble complexes in intestine, inactivation at high temperatures and potentially allergen in human beings. All these can be avoided by using this nutritional supplement based on pronutrients.
Pronutrients that act as mineral absorption promoters are available under the commercial name of Alquernat Magacal.Â