Alternative growth promoters are able to not only effectively replace the traditional use of antibiotics but also provide additional health benefits for livestock and reduce food safety concerns. This study investigated the effects of dry Hydrastis canadensis on the laying performance and fecal microbial community of laying hens. Twenty-four Lohmann (LSL, white layer strain) hens were reared from 40 to 48 weeks of age and randomly allotted to four dietary treatments (six birds/treatment). The dietary treatments comprised a basal diet with no treatment as control, a basal diet plus 0.6% powder of dry Hydrastis canadensis roots (R) or leaves (L), and a basal diet plus 0.6% powder of a mixture of dry Hydrastis canadensis roots and leaves (1:1, LR). No mortality was observed in the whole experimental period. The results indicated that albumen height in the LR group was significantly greater than that in the control group. The diet supplemented with Hydrastis canadensis had no significant effects on egg production rate, egg weight, eggshell strength, eggshell thickness, Haugh unit, or yolk height during the whole experimental phase. However, principal coordinate analysis, comparative heat map analysis, and cluster dendrogram analysis of cecal microbiota showed distinct clusters among the groups treated with Hydrastis canadensis and the control group. Regarding blood biochemical parameters, serum cholesterol levels were significantly lower in all Hydrastis canadensis-treated groups compared with those in the control group. Moreover, serum low-density lipoprotein levels were lower in hens supplemented with the leaf of Hydrastis canadensis. The abundances of the phyla Fusobacteria and Kiritimatiellaeota were increased (p < 0.05) in laying hens fed with 0.6% Hydrastis canadensis leaves, whereas the abundance of the phylum Firmicutes in cecum digesta decreased in response to treatment with Hydrastis canadensis roots and leaves. The relative abundance of the Fusobacterium genus was higher in the LR group.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- 獸醫 (全部)