Indian Journal of Animal Research

  • Chief EditorK.M.L. Pathak

  • Print ISSN 0367-6722

  • Online ISSN 0976-0555

  • NAAS Rating 6.50

  • SJR 0.263

  • Impact Factor 0.5 (2023)

Frequency :
Monthly (January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November and December)
Indexing Services :
Science Citation Index Expanded, BIOSIS Preview, ISI Citation Index, Biological Abstracts, Scopus, AGRICOLA, Google Scholar, CrossRef, CAB Abstracting Journals, Chemical Abstracts, Indian Science Abstracts, EBSCO Indexing Services, Index Copernicus
Indian Journal of Animal Research, volume 57 issue 4 (april 2023) : 449-454

Effect of using Compound Feeds with Different Protein Levels on Meat-type Quails

Minodora Tudorache1, I. Custura1,*, Elena Popescu-Miclosanu1, L. Ionita2, Elena Narcisa Pogurschi1, Dana Catalina Popa1
1Department of Production and Processing Technologies, Faculty of Animal Productions Engineering and Management, University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine of Bucharest, 59 Marasti Avenue, District 1, 011464, Romania.
2Ionita T. Lucian Individual Enterprise, Quails farm, Gherghita, no 71a, Prahova, Romania.
Cite article:- Tudorache Minodora, Custura I., Popescu-Miclosanu Elena, Ionita L., Pogurschi Narcisa Elena, Popa Catalina Dana (2023). Effect of using Compound Feeds with Different Protein Levels on Meat-type Quails . Indian Journal of Animal Research. 57(4): 449-454. doi: 10.18805/IJAR.BF-1579.
Background: In raising quails for meat production, great importance must be given to their nutrition, the use of the right compound feed suitable for them ensuring the achievement of higher performance. The aim of the research was to establish the influence of crude protein in compound feed on production performance in meat-type quails and their productive characterization.

Methods: For the research, data were collected and statistically processed from Jumbo meat quails, youth and adults, during the years 2020 and 2021 in a farm specialized in quail growth.

Result: It is recommended to use in the meat quail youth a compound feed with a protein value of 24.80% throughout the six weeks of growth because it ensures 15.00% superior performance (265.23±4.13 g/head at 42 days) compared to the reduction of the protein level at the age of 21 days from 24.80% to 22.50%. It is also recommended for laying quails to use a feed with a protein level of 21% which leads to significantly higher results (average 12-month laying percentage of 78.75±2.91%) compared to protein level of 18.20%.
Quails are of particular importance both due to the production of eggs, meat, scientific and medical research (Bai et al., 2020; Kaplan et al., 2018; Taskin, 2017).

Quail can be exploited for meat production due to their short incubation period (Azahar et al., 2018), short periods of growth and maturation of the youth (Monika et al., 2020; Redoy et al., 2017) and the good laying in the first eight months period (Jatoi et al., 2013).

The consistent progress registered in bird nutrition is one of the key factors of recent development in the poultry industry (Sirsat et al., 2018). Most poultry nutrition research looks at protein, because the level of protein is the most important factor in the final cost of the compound feed (Hertamawati et al., 2019) mention that protein and energy account for 85% of the final cost of compound feed). From the 20 amino acids that make up the protein structure, methionine and lysine levels are critically important in the composition of compound feed recipes for poultry growth (Melaku et al., 2019). In growing quails, the level of protein, mainly methionine and lysine, varies considerably in relation to the growth rate of chicks and the level of egg production in adult quails. The higher the growth performance of chicks and the production of adult quails, the higher the protein requirements (Garcia et al., 2019).

The aim of the research was to establish the influence of the protein level of the compound feed on the breeding performance of young and laying quails and the production performance of brown Jumbo meat quails throughout the production cycle.
The experiments were carried out between March 2020 and June 2021, in the Department of Animal Husbandry Technologies, Animal Productions Engineering and Management Faculty from the University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine of Bucharest and in the quail breeding farm “Ionita T Lucian Individual Enterprise”.
Experimental design and feeding
The research works were carried out on 630 Jumbo brown meat quails (Table 1), randomly divided in two equal groups since hatching (group A1, that received two types of combined feed with different protein levels, corresponding to the two growth phases, namely the 1-3 week phase (24.80% crude protein, CP) and the 4-7 week growth phase (22.50% CP) and group A2, which received a single type of combined feed with a protein level of 24.80% CP throughout the 1-7 week period of growth. For determination the carcass characteristics, were analysed at 7-week-old males from the groups A1 and A2, identified in the experiment as forming groups A1-1 and A2-1. Also, at the age of 7 weeks, 300 adult quails (females) obtained were divided into two equal groups (group A1-2, that received combined feed with a protein level of 18.20% CP and group A2-2, that received combined feed with a protein level of 21.00 % CP).

Table 1: Experimental design scheme for the age of the birds and the type of compound feed administered.

On the basis of chemical analysis of the raw materials, their nutritive values were calculated and compound feed recipes were formulated and manufactured by growth phase and treatment. The nutritional values of the compound feed recipes used in the experiment and their ingredients are shown in Table 2.

Table 2: The nutritional values of the compound feed recipes used in the experiment and their ingredients*.

The animals in the experiment were cared for in accordance with Law 43/2014 for the handling and protection of animals used for experimental purposes and EU Council Directive 98/58/EC on the protection of farm animals, approved by our university. Livestock was uniform in terms of body weight and the experimental block design was used.
Analytical measurements and statistical analysis
Growth performances in youth quail
At the age of one day and then weekly up to 42 days inclusively, live weight and daily consumption of compound feeds were determined; then by their statistical processing, data were obtained on the average daily weight gain and specific consumption of compound feeds.
Carcass yield
The quails weighing (g) before slaughter, of the eviscerated carcases and of the breast were done; then by processing this data yields at slaughter (%) were obtained.
Productive performances in laying quail
The daily number of eggs and the daily consumption of compound feeds (g) were registered. Then, by statistical processing of these data, the average percentage of laying, egg production/head/month and specific consumption per egg were obtained. Also, were determined data on the weight of the quails and of the eggs on each month.
Statistical analysis
The results were presented as mean values±standard errors of the mean. The Microsoft Excel 2016 program to calculate the statistical parameters and the Student test to establish the significance of the differences between the means (Sandu 1995) were used. The differences between the analysed means were non-significant (at P>0.05), significant (P≤0.05), distinctly significant (P≤0.010) or very significant (P≤0.001) and indicated by superscripts.
The evolution of the growth performances in the young meat quails groups during 1 to 6 weeks of age
In the first three weeks, the differences between the averages of the analysed performances were insignificant (Table 3, Table 4). Between 28-42 days, the differences become significant between the two groups. Thus, the live weight at the age of 28 days in group A2 was 180.44±3.55 g/head, with 16.13% higher compared to A1 and the weekly growth gain was 49.89±2.06 g/head in A2 and of 25.59±0.34 g in group A1.

Table 3: The evolution of body weight in the Jumbo meat quail youth from the two groups during the period 1-42 days of growth.

Table 4: The evolution of the gain growth, compound feeds consumption and specific consumption of quail youth from the two analysed groups.

The live weight at the age of 35 days in group A2 was 226.45±3.89 g/head, with 15.98% higher compared to A1 and the weekly growth rate 46.01±2.23 g/head in A2 and 38.94±0.65 g in A1.

Live weight at the age of 42 days in group A2 was 265.23±4.13 g/head, with 15.00% higher compared to A1 (225.46±4.04 g/head) and weekly growth rate 38.78±1.78 g/head in A2 and of 35.19±1.06 g/head in A1.

Two experiments conducted in India by (Malarmathi et al., 2012) and (Umamaheshwari et al., 2018), with crude protein of 24% during 0-3 weeks and 21.10% during 4-5 weeks on a flock of Japanese meat quails mentioned body weights at 2, 4 and 5 weeks similar with those obtained in group A1.

Two Jumbo meat quail experiments performed in South Africa by (Mbhele et al., 2019), Marareni and Mnisi (2020) reported growth performances similar to those recorded in group A1.

In period 28-42 days of the present experiment, as in the case of body weight and growth gain, the differences in feed consumption and specific consumption are significant between the two groups. Thus, in the 5th week of growth, the average consumption of compound feeds was 21.34±0.87 g in group A2, with 24.34% lower compared to A1. The specific consumption was 3.25±0.59 in group A2 and 5.07±0.68 in A1. In the sixth week of growth the average consumption was 29.76±2.56 g in group A2, with 18.35% lower compared to A1. The specific consumption was 7.25±0.55 in group A2 and of 5.37±0.12 g c.f. /g gain in A1, the difference between the two groups being very significant.

In an experiment on a flock of meat quail youth, in Romania, Stoica and Stoica (2001) mention a compound feed consumption and a specific consumption in week 5 of growth, closed to those obtained in the present experiment in group A2.
Carcass characteristics in 7 week-old males Jumbo quail in groups A1-1 and A2-1 
The average carcass weight measured at seven weeks of age was with 22.12% higher in group A2-1 (212.68±4.54 g) compared to group A1-1 (165.63±3.67 g) (Table 5). The final yield of the carcass at seven weeks was with 4.11% higher in group A2-1 (74.46±3.64%) compared to group A1-1. The average breast weight was with 21.29% higher in A2-1 (102.87±4.56 g/carcass) compared to group A1-1.

Table 5: Carcass characteristics in Jumbo quail males in groups A1-1 and A2-1 at 7 weeks of age.

The differences between the average carcass characteristics of the two analysed lots were very significant.

A study conducted in Turkey by (Ozbey et al., 2004) mentions carcass characteristics similar to those recorded in group A1-1.
The evolution of the production performances at laying Jumbo meat quails during the period 1-12 months of laying
The peak of laying (Table 6) in both groups of the analysed quails was recorded in the sixth month, being very significantly higher, with 16.00%, in group A2-2 (92 .00±2.56%) compared to group A1-2. Also, there was the highest egg production /head in both groups.

Table 6: Evolution of egg production and egg weight in laying Jumbo meat-quails from the two batches during 1-12 months of laying.

The laying percentage remained above 80% between the fourth and ninth months in the case of the group A2-2 and above the level of 70% between the third and the ninth month in group A1-2.

The average laying percentage in the period 1-12 months (Table 6) was of 67.33±2.83% in group A1-2 and by 11.42 % higher in A2-2 group.

Body weight (Table 7) registered an ascending trend during the 12 months of the study (from 230.00±2.54 g/head in group A1-2 and 280.00±3.05 g/head in A2-2 in the first month, to 287.00±5.23 g/ head in group A1-2 and to 351.00±6.76 g/head in A2-2 the 12th month).

Table 7: Evolution consumption of compound feeds, specific consumption for egg and of the body weight in Jumbo laying quails from the two groups during 1-12 months of laying.

The average weight of the egg, very significantly higher in group A2-2, increased until the sixth laying month in both groups. It remained at a high level until the ninth month, then gradually decreased until the twelfth (10.15±0.67 g/egg in group A1-2 and 11.95±0.22 g/ egg in A2-2).

The average specific consumption had the same curve as the percentage of laying, with a minimum in the sixth month in both groups (54.55±4.05 g c.f./egg in group A1-2 and 41.17±3.23 in A2-2).

The differences between the averages of the production performances of the two analysed groups were very significant in all laying months.

A study conducted in Brazil by (Santos et al., 2015) mentions to a flock of meat quail called “European”, at 4 months of laying an average of 91.94%, higher than in both groups from this paper. The weight of the egg was of 12.73 g, similar to that in the present experiment in group A2-2. It should be mentioned that the levels of crude protein and lysine were of 20%, 1.05% respectively.

In a study conducted in Cameroon by (Francois et al., 2021), on several quail varieties of quails, had found in the brown variety that the laying peak was in the sixth month (74%, similar in value to that in the group A1-2).

In nutrition experiment conducted in Sudan on Japanese brown laying quails for 10 weeks, (Muhammad et al., 2016) concluded that increasing protein levels of compound feed leads to increased production performances.

In an experiment performed in Brazil on quails in the 12th month of laying, (Souza et al., 2016) obtained higher values in number and weight of eggs compared to the groups analysed in the present experiment.

Stoica and Stoica (2001) mention that the level of lysine influences the mass of the yolk and the level of methionine the mass of the white, so that the deficiency of them is reflected by the corresponding decrease in the weight of the eggs, similar to that in the present experiment in group A1-2.
The present research showed that the use at young meat quails, in the second part of the growth (period 4-7 weeks), of a combined feed with a higher protein level had superior results both on the growth of chicks and on the yield at slaughter. Also, the use of a compound feed with a higher protein level in adult meat quails led to superior results both on production performance and the consumption of compound feed throughout the exploitation period (1-12 months of laying. It is recommend that the combined feeds for meat quails to be very well balanced nutritionally, but also optimized from economic point of view, depending on the specific consumption of combined feeds on growth gain mass, in the case of youth and on the egg in the case of adult quails.

  1. Azahar, M., Ahmed, S., Mehomood, S., Naveed, S., Ahmad, S., Osman, M., Zia, M.W. (2018). Performance of broiler Japanese quail supplemented with single-strain and multi -strain bacteria. Indian Journal of Animal Research.  52(12): 1797-1802. DOI: 10.18805/ijar.B-828.

  2. Bai, J.Y., Cao, H., Yang, S., Pang, Y.Z., Jiang, M.J., Fan, H.D., Fu, X.Y., Zhang, J.Y., Shi, H.J. (2020). Comparative analysis in early growth and development of different egg-laying quails. Indian Journal of Animal Research. 54(3): 392- 395. DOI: 10.18805/ijar.B-1086.

  3. Francois, K.D., Akana, A.E., Radu-Rusu, R.M., Teodorescu, A., Usturoi, M.G., Ngoula, F., Teguia, A. (2021). Effect of the quails phenotype and breeding age on egg laying and characteristics. Open Journal of Animal Science. 11(2): 208-221. DOI: 10.4236/ojas.2021.112016.

  4. Garcia, E.A., Mendes, A.A., Pizzolante, C.C., Saldanha, E.S.P.B., Moreira, J., Mori J., Pavan, A.C. (2019). Protein, methyonine +cystine and lysine levels for Japanese quails during the production phase. Brazilian Journal of Poultry Science. 7(1).

  5. Hertamawati, R.T., Suyadi, Soedjarwo, E., Sjofjan, O. (2019). Reproductive performance of Japanese quails hens (Coturnix coturnix japonica) fed with feed restriction regimes during growth period. Agricultural Science Digest. 39(2): 163-166. DOI: 10.18805/ag.D-145.

  6. Jatoi, A.S., Shota, A.W., Akram, M., Javed, K.M., Jaspal, H., Hussain, J., Mirani, A.H., Mehmood, S. (2013). Effect of different body weight categories in the productive performance of for close-bred flocks of Japanese quails (Coturnix  japonica). Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences. 23(1): 7-13. ISSN: 1018-7081.

  7. Kaplan, O., Avci, M., Denek, N., Baran, M.S., Nursoy, H., Bozkaya, F. (2018). Influence of humic acid addition to dribbling water in laying performance and egg quality in Japanese quail. Indian J. Anim. Res. 52(9): 1309-1312. DOI:10.18805 /ijar.B-874.

  8. Malarmathi, M., Ramesh, G.B., Gnana, P.M. and Rajashekar, A.R. (2012). Genetic study in production traits of Japanese quail. Indian Journal of Animal Research. 46(2): 164-167.

  9. Marareni, M., Mnisi, C.M. (2020). Growth performance, serum biochemistry and meat quality traits of Jumbo quails fed with mopane worm (Imbrasia belina)-meal containing diets. Veterinary and Animal Science Journal. 10: 100141. DOI: j.vas.2020.100141.

  10. Mbhele, F.G.T., Mnisi, C.M., Mlambo, V. (2019). A nutritional evaluation of insect meal as a sustainable protein source for jumbo quails: Physiological and meat quality responses. Sustainability Journal. 11(23): 6592; DOI: 10.3390/su112 36592.

  11. Melaku, M., Urge, M., Animut, G. (2019). Comparative evaluation of growth performance among broilers supplemented with synthetic lysine amino acid from 0-28 days. Agricultural Science Digest. 39(4): 341-346. DOI: 10.18805/ag.D-154.

  12. Monika, M., Rokade, J.J., Narayan, R., Saxena, V.K., Snehasmita, P., Gopi, M. (2020). Studies on growth performances and genetic parameters of three varieties of domesticated Japanese quail. Indian Journal of Animal Research. 54(11): 1338-1342. DOI: 10.18805/ijar.B-3897.

  13. Muhammad, N., Altine, S., Abubakar, A., Cafe, U.M., Saulawa, L.A., Gârbã, M.G., Yusuf, A. (2016). Effect of varying protein levels and preservation methods in egg production performance and internal egg qualities of Japanese quails in a semi-arid environment. European Journal of Applied and Basic Science. 3(3): 8-19. ISSN 2059-3058.

  14. Ozbey, O., Erisir, Z., Aysondu, M.H., Ozmen, O. (2004). The effect of high temperature on breeding and survival of Japanese quail that are bred under different temperatures. International  Journal Poultry Science. 3(7): 463-467. DOI: 10.3923/ ijps.2004.463.467.

  15. Redoy, M.R.A., Shuvo, A.A.S., Al-Mamun, M. (2017). A review on present status, problems and prospect of quail farming in Bangladesh. Bangladesh Journal of Animal Science. 46(2): 109-120. DOI: 10.3329/bjas.v46i2.34439.

  16. Sandu, G. (1995). Modele experimentale in zootehnie (Experimental models in animal husbandry). Publishing House Coral- Sanivet, Bucharest, Romania. 134-135; 298 pp.

  17. Santos, T.C., Murakami, A.E., Oliveira, C.A.L., Moraes, GV., Stefanello, C., Carneiro, T.V., Feitosa, C.C.G., Kaneko, I.N. (2015). Influence of European quail breeders age on egg quality, incubation, fertility and progeny performance. Brazilian Journal of Poultry Science. 17(1): 49-56. 10.1590/1516-635x170149-56.

  18. Sirsat, S.D., Chaithrashree, A.R., Ramteke, B.N., Shirsat, S.D. (2018). Early post hatch feeding in chicks and practical constrains -A review. Agricultural Reviews. 39(3): 226-233. DOI: 10.18805/ag.R-1763.

  19. Souza, D.S., Calixto, L.F.L., Lemnos, M.J., Filho, C.A.S., Pinho, T.P., Machado, C.A., Melo, I.A., Togashi, K.C. (2016). Quails performance and egg quality at the end of production fed with varying levels of calcium. Seminar: Ciencias Agrarias. 37(4): 2305-2406. DOI: 10.5433/1679-0359.2016v 37n4Supl1p2395.

  20. Stoica, I., Stoica, L. (2001). Bazele nutritiei si alimentatiei animalelor. Publishing House Coral-Sanivet, Bucharest, Romania. 563-566 pp.

  21. Taskin, A., Karadavut, U., Tunca, R.I., Genc, S. Cayan, H. (2017). Effect of selection for body weight in Japanese Quails (Coturnix coturnix Japonica) on some production traits. Indian Journal Animal Research. 51(2): 358-364. DOI 10. 18805/ijar.11466.

  22. Umamaheshwari, S., Selvan, S.T., Muthusamy, P., Radhakrishnan, L. (2018). Effect of dietary supplementation of ghee residue in the performance of Japanese quail. Indian Journal of Animal Research. 52(7): 995-999. DOI: 10.18805/ijar.B-3348.

Editorial Board

View all (0)