PAKISTAN JOURNAL OF ZOOLOGY, vol.48, no.5, pp.1389-1393, 2016 (SCI-Expanded)
The purpose of this study was to determine effects of the combination of direct-fed microbials (DFM) with exogenous feed enzymes (EFE) on the growth performance, feed efficiency ratio as well as some behavioural traits of Brown Swiss x Eastern Anatolian Red F-1 calves reared in Eastern Region of Turkey. Twenty crossbred calves (10 males and 10 females) were assigned to treatment (DFM plus EFE additive) and control groups. Calves in DFM plus EFE group had 3.05 kg and 5.11 kg higher (P<0.05) weights at weaning and 3 months of ages than these in control group. Growth rate of the DFM plus EFE supplemented calves was significantly greater (P<0.05) than calves in control group in pre-weaning as well as between birth and 3 months of age. The feeding of DFM plus EFE additives to crossbred calves resulted in beneficial effect on the feed efficiency ratio in the pre-weaning period, and amount of dry matter of feed consumed per kg weight gain was significantly (P<0.05) decreased in the calves in the treatment group. Gains in front shank circumferences from body measurements was also significantly higher (P<0.05) in the calves fed DFM plus EFE supplement compared to these in the control group. Behavioural activities of the calves were not significantly affected by DFM plus EFE additives. In conclusion, feeding combination of DFM and EFE to the crossbred calves resulted in significant beneficial effect on the growth performance and feed efficiency ratio of the young animals.