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Nutrient digestibility in African grey parrots fed pelleted diets

A feeding trial was performed to study the influence of particle size in extruded parrot pellets on apparent digestibility and excreta consistency and pH. Two test diets were alternately provided to eight African grey parrots according to a 2×2 crossover design. Both diets were similar in nutrient content and ingredient composition but differed in particle size of the composing particles of individual pellets. Apparent digestibility of macronutrients was studied using the total collection method. Next, the appearance of the excreta was studied by calculation of weight-surface ratio of individual excrements as an objective measurement of consistency.
Last, excreta pH was measured directly on fresh excrements and on homogenized 10% excreta solutions. Neither apparent digestibility coefficients nor excreta pH values were significantly different in parrots fed the two diets. However, excreta consistency was significantly (P < 0.05) more solid when fed the coarse diet than when fed with the finely ground diet. The results of this study suggest that excreta consistency can be improved through larger particle size, without adverse effects on nutritive value of the diet.

Source: I.D. Kalmar, G. Werquin and G.P.J Janssens, 2007. JAPAN 91(5-6):210-216.

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