Broiler producers are being encouraged to use a narasin-based coccidiosis control programme throughout the production cycle. Elanco’s poultry technical consultant, Dr James Bishop, explains why uninterrupted use of narasin delivers welfare and production benefits.
Establishing a stable and continuous coccidiosis control programme is key to consistent production performance in broiler units.
Dr Bishop says the best way of achieving this is through uninterrupted use of narasin, which is the active ingredient in both Maxiban™ and Monteban™.
He says although ionophore anticoccidials, such as these products, are a proven tool for fighting coccidiosis – which is estimated to cost the industry globally £8.6bn every year – not all ionophores offer the same benefits.
“Some – such as salinomycin – can have a greater negative effect on broilers, which tends to present as a decrease in feed intake or a period of anorexia in the birds,” explains Dr Bishop.
“Of all the ionophores available, narasin has the least anorexic effect on birds, and as such, it offers effective coccidiosis control without being detrimental to production.”
Many producers use narasin until around 26 or 27 days of the production cycle, before changing anticoccidial programme to another ionophore.
Dr Bishop says this is due to a misconception that repetitive use of the same ionophore leads to resistance developing.
“This simply isn’t the case; we’ve used narasin for more than 20 years now and we’ve seen no field-based resistance develop to it,” he adds.
“All ionophores work in the same manner in terms of how they integrate into the membrane of the coccidia, so if you had resistance to one, you’d have resistance to them all.”
Recommended narasin use
To avoid the risks when changing anticoccidial programmes during the production cycle, Dr Bishop recommends sticking with narasin throughout.
He advises using Maxiban past the peak of coccidiosis challenge and finishing birds with Monteban.
Both products contain narasin, however Maxiban also contains nicarbazin and these two active ingredients work synergistically to effectively control coccidiosis during the peak challenge.
“In addition, the narasin allows leakage of sporozoites into the intestine, which enables birds to generate natural immunity to coccidiosis,” adds Dr Bishop.
“This is crucial as the birds develop immunity to coccidia as they age, it also enables them to cope with any later challenges when they are at peak growth and performance to minimise the impact of coccidiosis on the bird.”
He says a trial comparing Maxiban to a monensin/nicarbazin programme showed it delivers:
· 5.7% more feed efficiency
· 7.5% more growth
· 1.7% more breast meat
Benefits of finishing birds with Monteban
Using Monteban to finish birds delivers improved results as highlighted in a recent trial, says Dr Bishop.
“A large-scale pen study in Europe comparing the two ionophores found the birds treated with Monteban experienced a 3.3% increase in average daily feed intake, compared to those given salinomycin, and their final body weight was also 150g higher5,” he explains.
Dr Bishop says a stable coccidiosis control programme not only delivers improvements in feed conversion rate (FCR) and better daily liveweight gain, but also more uniformity in the finished birds.
“In addition, because it delivers improved Intestinal Integrity, you tend to get better litter quality, which results in less instances of pododermatitis,” adds Dr Bishop.
“Using narasin all the way through the production cycle can give you the potential to deliver over 5 points of FCR6,” he adds.
“Each point is worth around 1.3p – demonstrating the superior economic benefit that can be achieved from using narasin products like Maxiban and Monteban.”
For more information on coccidiosis control please click here.