Poultry Feed Nutrition: Everything you need to Know

Pashu Sandesh, 14 March 2021

Dr V. Rajendra Prasad

(Poultry Consultant) 

The science of nutrition involves providing a balance of nutrients that best meets the animal's needs :

a) for growth,

b) maintenance,

c) egg production, etc.

For economic reasons, this supply of nutrients should be at least cost, and so we must supply only enough for requirements, without there being any major excesses. In poultry diets, these limiting nutrients are usually energy and some of the essential amino acids, such as methionine and lysine.


a) Measure as crude protein, which is simply nitrogen x 6.25.

b) Component amino acids are an important part of the protein.

c) There are 10 amino acids that are essential to the birds

d) The essential amino acids for poultry are arginine, glycine, histidine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, methionine, cystine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine.

e) Out of these, the ones critical in practical diets are :





and tryptophan.

5. Energy:

The most expensive nutrient in a diet.

a) Energy is important because it governs feed intake.

b) high energy ---> low feed intake

c) low energy ---> high feed intake

d) Sources of energy - everything in the diet other than minerals.


a) Not really an essential nutrient, other than linoleic acid (fatty acid).

b) Animal fats -hard, inexpensive. Cause Problem with digestion in young birds.

c) Vegetable oils - liquid, expensive.


a) Fat-soluble - A, D3, E, K.

b) Water-soluble - B vitamins eg. Riboflavin, biotin


a) Macro --> Calcium, Phosphorus

b) Micro --> Copper, Zinc, Manganese, Iron, Iodine, Selenium

c) Salt --> Sodium, Chloride


a) Water is an essential part of life for all poultry and livestock, but the amount required for adequate health and productivity will vary depending on the temperature in which the birds are kept.

b) Any level of water deprivation exceeding twelve hours will have an adverse effect on the growth of poultry and the egg production of layers.

c) Water deprivation exceeding 24 - 36 hours will more often than not result in death.

d) It’s therefore vital to provide cool, clean water for your poultry, and ensure that it’s accessible to them at all times.