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Several reports have shown that medicinal herbs have antibacterial properties that can lower diseases outbreak in poultry. However, little is known about utilisation of baobab, garlic, tiger nuts and amaranthus as nutraceuticals to improve poultry eggs production and quality. These herbs may cause depressed physiological integrity of the layers. Therefore, processed baobab leaves, garlic bulbs, tiger nuts and amaranthus leaves were mixed proportionally, added to commercial layers mash and fed to 240 layers for 7 weeks, with the aim of evaluating the egg quality, performance and haematological indices. Eggs were collected on daily basis, processed for external and internal qualities evaluations. Blood samples were collected at week 7, processed for haematological examination following standard procedures. Also, feed intake, live weight and hen day production were determined. Results showed that feed intake varied from 3.66 kg (D3) – 4.25 g (D5), while  live weight ranged from 2.96 kg (control: D1) – 3.2 kg (D5). Egg weight ranged between 40.66 g (D5) and 46.37 g (D1), eggshell thickness was highest (70.9 mm) in D3, compared to 57.18 mm in D5 and albumen pH was 7.06 (D1) but ranged from 6.31 – 6.41 (D2 – D5). Haugh unit varied between 10.58 and 11.09HU, foaming capacity was highest (414.64 mL) in D2 and lowest (307.57 mL) in D1. Hen day production was significantly depressed (P<0.05) in D2 (17.71%), compared to 43.67% (D1). Packed cell volume ranged from 20.0 – 28.5%, haemoglobin (6.8 – 9.37g/dL), white blood cells (99.0 – 207.0 x 103/mm3), neutrophils (1 – 5%) and lymphocytes varied between 95.5 and 99%. Although, baobab and garlic bulb combination seemingly depressed egg production, inclusion of baobab, garlic, tiger nuts and amaranthus up to 125 – 250g, may not distort egg quality and blood profiles in layers.  Since there was no mortality during the study, baobab, garlic, tiger nuts and amaranthus could be utilised as nutraceaticals in poultry nutrition to enhance performance.  

Antibiotics, avian egg characteristics, laying hens, poultry diets.

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