Copper-protein nutrition of New Zealand white rabbits under egyptian conditions

M.S. Ayyat, I.F.M. Marai, A.M. Alazab


One hundred and twenty male New Zealand White (NZW) rabbits of 35 days of age were randomly allotted to twelve groups. Rabbits of six groups were fed a low protein diet (16.44 % crude protein) and the other six were fed a high protein diet (18.5 % crude protein). Within each dietary protein level, three groups were supplemented with copper sulfate to supply either 0, 100 or 200 ppm copper/kg diet, while the other three were supplemented with copper chloride to supply the same levels of copper. Most of the studied traits were affected positively with the increase in each of protein and copper levels in the diets of NZW rabbits without interaction. The affected traits were : live body weight and daily gain ( Protein high vs low : 28.2 vs 23.4 g/d ; Cu 0-100-200 ppm : 22.1-25.9-29.2 g/d ; P<0.001), feed conversion, protein efficiency, nutrient digestibility and final margin, as well as, concentration of serum protem, albumin (Protein high : + 12 % vs low ; Cu 100 and 200 ppm : 8 % and 17 % vs O ppm ; P<0.001), urea, creatinine (P<0.01) and SGOT (P<0.05). Feed cost, serum globulin level, SGPi and sorne carcass and non-carcass components were insignificantly affected by levels of either protein or copper. Dressing percentage increased slightly with the increase of dietary protein and copper levels, while empty gut percentage (relatively to live body weight) decreased wIth addition of copper in rabbit diets. The effects of copper source and the interaction between protein level and each of copper level and source on the traits studied, did not show any significance.

Full Text:



ADELSTEIN S.L, VALLEE B.L., 1962. Mineral metabolism. Academic Press, New York, London.

ANGWA F.O.I., OKORIE A.U., ENUNWAONYE C.A., 1984. Effect of varying copper and protein levels on the performance of rabbits in the tropics. Tropical Veterinarian, Nigeria, 2, 103-112.

AOAC, 1980. Official method of analysis. 13th edition. Association of Official Analytical Chemists, Washington, USA.

AYYAT M.S., 1994. Effect of different levels of dietary protein and copper on growth performance in rabbits. Egyptian Journal of Rabbit Science, 4, 83-92.

BASSUNY S.M., 1991. The effect of copper sulfate supplementation on rabbit performance, under Egyptian conditions. J. Appl. Rabbit Res., 14, 93-97.

B0WLAND J.P., CHAMBERLAIN A.G., BRAUDE A., GLASC0CK R.F., MITCHELL K.G., 1961. The absorption, distribution and excretion of labelled copper in young pigs given different quantities, as sulphate or sulphide, orally or intravenously. British J. Nutr., 15, 59-71.

BUNCH R.J., MCCALL J.T., SPEER V.C., HAYS V.W., 1965. Copper supplementation far weanling pigs. J. Anim. Sci., 24, 995-1000.

FEKETE S., GIPPERT T., HULLAR H., SZILAGY M., 1988. Effect of dietary copper sulfate concentration on digestion, growth rate and some blood parameters of broiler rabbits. In Proc. of 4th World Rabbit Congr., Budapest, 198-201.

HAWBAKER J.A., SPEER V.C., HAYS V.W., CATR0N D.V., 1961. Effect of copper sulfate and other chemotherapeutics in growing swine rations. J. Anim. Sci., 20, 163-167.

KING J.O.L., 1975. The feeding of copper sulfate to growing rabbits. British Vet. J., 133, 593-599. LADETT0 G., SARRA C., B0CCIGN0NE M., 1984. The use of copper as a growth factor far rabbits. Effect of copper sulfate and oxide on the fatty acid composition of liver lipids and depot fats. Ann. Facolta Med. Vet. di Torino, 28, 346-357.

N.R.C., 1977. Nutrient requirements of rabbits. National Research Council, 2nd edition, Washington DC.

OMOLE T.A., 1977. lnfluence of levels of dietary protein and supplementary copper on the performance of growing rabbits. British Vet. J., 133, 593-599.

OMOLE T.A., 1979. The influence of dietary fat and levels of supplementary copper on live and carcass performance and fatty acid composition of kidney fat of growing rabbits. Nigerian J. Agr. Sci, 1, 31-38.

PATT0N N.M., HARRIS D.J., GR0BNER M.A., SWICK R.A., CHEEKE P.R., 1982. The effect of dietary copper sulfate on enteritis in fryer rabbits. J. Appl. Rabbit Res., 5, 78-82.

QUATERMAN J., 1967. Husbandry of Laboratory Animals. Academic Press, London.

SNEDECOR G.W., C0CHRAN W.G., 1982. Statistical methods. 6th Ed., Iowa State University Press, Ames, USA.

Abstract Views

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM


Cited-By (articles included in Crossref)

This journal is a Crossref Cited-by Linking member. This list shows the references that citing the article automatically, if there are. For more information about the system please visit Crossref site

1. Dietary Copper Supplementation Increases Growth Performance by Increasing Feed Intake, Digestibility, and Antioxidant Activity in Rex Rabbits
Fan Li, Lei Liu, Xiaoyang Chen, Bin Zhang, Fuchang Li
Biological Trace Element Research  year: 2021  
doi: 10.1007/s12011-020-02568-z


 Universitat Politècnica de València


Official journal of the World Rabbit Science Association (WRSA)


e-ISSN: 1989-8886     ISSN: 1257-5011