Lactogenic and Reproductive Potentials of Spreading Day Flower (Commelina Diffusa Burm. F) and Rock Fig (Ficus Ingens Miq.) In Rabbit Does

Jonas Ezea, Tobechukwu Chijioke Iwuji


Lactogenic and reproductive potentialities of Commelina diffusa  and Ficus ingens were  studied using twenty-four (24) nulliparous New Zealand White does. The does were mated to mature bucks, and divided into four (4) treatment groups of six per treatment. Each treatment was replicated three times, two does constituting a replicate in a completely randomized design (CRD). Treatment one (T1) (control) was concentrate diet, treatment two (T2) comprised of Commelina diffusa (leaves and stems), treatment three (T3) was made up of Ficus ingens (leaves), while mixed forages (Calopogonium mucunoides, Centrosema pubescens, Tridax procumbens, Panicum maximum and Gomphrena spp.) constituted T4. Within the four weeks lactation period, weekly milk yield (kg) of the does were significantly (P<0.05) different during the second and third week of lactation. In the second week, does on T4 (1.63 kg) recorded significantly (P<0.05) higher values than does on T2 (1.05 kg) and T3 (0.93 kg), which were similar (P>0.05). Does on T1 (1.28 kg) recorded similar (P>0.05) values to T2, T3, and T4. In the third week, T1 (1.52 kg) was significantly (P<0.05) higher than T4 (0.93 kg), but similar (P>0.05) to T2 (1.28 kg) and T3 (1.40 kg); and T2 and T3 were similar (P>0.05) to T4. Total milk yield (kg) (1 – 28 days) during the period of lactation recorded significantly (P<0.05) higher value in does on T1 (4.67 kg) than does on T3 (3.64 kg), but similar (P>0.05) to T2 (4.08 kg) and T4 (4.20 kg); and T3 was similar (P>0.05) to T2 and T4. Comparison of peak, total and average daily milk yield of the rabbit does, shows that Commelina diffusa effected lesser peak milk yield, but a higher total and average daily milk yield than Ficus ingens. Mean litter weights (g) of kits of does on T1 (201.40 g) and T2 (207.14 g) were similar (P>0.05), but significantly (P<0.05) higher than that of T3 (177.74 g); and T4 (196.43 g) similar (P>0.05) to T1, T2, and T3. This study demonstrates that Commelina diffusa and Ficus ingens, despite being fed as single forages, had appreciable impact on milk yield and reproductive performance component (litter weight gain). They are therefore recommended for inclusion in forage combinations for feeding rabbits.


Lactogenic; reproductive; spreading day flower; rock fig; rabbits.

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