Field evaluation of the effect of a probiotic-containing Bacillus licheniformis and Bacillus subtilis spores on the health status, performance, and carcass quality of grower and finisher pigs
AuthorAlexopoulos, C.; Georgoulakis, I. E.; Tzivara, A.; Kyriakis, C. S.; Govaris, A.; Kyriakis, S. C.
The aim of the study was to assess the efficacy of BioPlus 2B, a probiotic containing Bacillus licheniformis and B. subtilis spores, on the health status and productivity of pigs, during weaning, growing and finishing stages of growth. On a commercial farrow-to-finish farm, five experimental groups were formed, each of 54 weaned piglets. The pigs of the first group (double controls) received normal feed with no probiotic and the pigs of the second group (untreated controls) received BioPlus 2B only during the weaning stage. The pigs of the third, the fourth and the fifth group received the same as the second group feed but, at the growing and at a part of the finishing stages, supplemented with three different doses of Bioplus 2B, a low, medium and high dose, respectively. The results have shown that, compared with the double controls, BioPlus 2B-treated pigs had a lower morbidity and mortality during the whole trial period, compared with the double controls (range from 9.26 to 14.81% versus 25.93% and from 0.00 to 3.70% versus 11.1%, respectively), as a result of the lower incidence of post-weaning diarrhoea due mainly to Escherichia coli. Weight gain, feed conversion ratio and carcass quality of the BioPlus 2B-treated pigs were significantly improved compared with the double controls, whilst the beneficial effects of the probiotic were more pronounced when the medium and high doses were used. © 2004 Blackwell Verlag.
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