Title                                                                                                                                         i

Certification                                                                                                                             ii

Dedication                                                                                                                               iii

Acknowledgement                                                                                                                   iv

Table of content                                                                                                                      v

List of Tables                                                                                                                           vi

List of Figures                                                                                                                          vii

Abstract                                                                                                                                   viii


Chapter One

1.0 Introduction                                                                                                                                   1

1.1 Background of the study                                                                                                   1

1.2 Problem statement                                                                                                             3

1.3 Objectives of the study                                                                                                      4

1.4 Justification of the study                                                                                                   5


Chapter Two

2.0.0     Literature Review                                                                                                       7

2.1.0    Origin and Distribution of Turkey                                                                               7

2.1.2    Description of Local Turkey                                                                                        7

2.1.3    Turkey Production in Nigeria                                                                                       8

2.2.1    Body Weight and sexual maturity                                                                                8

2.2.2    Body Weight and Semen Quality                                                                                 9

2.3.1     Physiology of semen production                                                                                9

2.3.2    Physiology of Avian Sperm                                                                                         10

2.3.3    Lipid Peroxidation of Semen                                                                                       11

2.3.4    Metabolic Aspect of Antioxidant Defense.                                                                  12

2.4.0    Enhancing Reproductive Efficiency of Turkey                                                                       13

2.5.0    Origin and Distribution of Moringa Oleifera                                                                14

2.5.1    Nutritional Properties of Moringa Oleifera                                                                   15

2.5.2     Amino acid Content of Moringa Oleifera leaves                                                                     15

2.5.3    Therapeutic Properties of Moringa Oleifera                                                                 16

2.5.4    Effect of Moringa Oleifera on Reproduction in Male                                                  17

2.6.0    Origin and Distribution of Gongronema latifolium                                                      17

2.6.1    Nutritional Properties of Gongronema latifolium                                                                     18

2.6.2   Therapeutic Properties of Gongronema Latifolium                                                       18

2.6.3   Effects of Gongronema latifolium on Reproduction of Male Animal                           19

2.7.0   Artificial Insemination                                                                                                  19

2.7.1    Artificial Insemination in Turkey                                                                                             20

2.7.2    Semen Collection                                                                                                         21

2.7.3    Semen Quality Evaluation                                                                                           21  Semen Colour                                                                                                             21  Volume of ejaculate                                                                                                   22  Motility Evaluation                                                                                                     22   Motility Evaluation Technique                                                                                               23    Morphology Semen Evaluation                                                                                             23   Morphology Assessments Technique                                                                                     24   Sperm Concentration                                                                                                 25

2.8.0      The Biochemistry of Semen                                                                                      26

2.8.1      Determination of Fructose Concentration                                                                  27

2.8.2       Fructose as a Constituent of Seminal Plasma.                                                                       28

2.8.3       Importance of Fructose Test in Evaluation of Fertility                                                          28

2.8.4       Evaluation of Seminal Chemical Elements on Fertility                                                         30

2.8.5       Sodium and Potassium Concentration in Semen                                                                   31

2.8.6       Sodium and Potassium Effects on Semen Quality and Fertility                                             31

2.9.0      Factors affecting poultry semen                                                                                 32

2.9.1      Ambient Temperature                                                                                                            32

2.9.2       Micro Bacterial Contamination                                                                                             32

2.9.3      Photoperiod                                                                                                               33

2.9.4      Nutrition                                                                                                                    33

2.9.5      Age Factor                                                                                                                 34

2.9.6      Oxidative stress                                                                                                         34

2.9.7      Frequency of Ejaculation                                                                                           34

2.9.8      Breed/species variation                                                                                              35

2.9.1      Semen Collection Technique                                                                                                 35

2.10.1     Artificial insemination                                                                                                          35

2.10.2     Site, Depths and Time of Insemination                                                                                 36

2.10.3     Fertilizing Capacity of the Sperm Cell in vitro                                                                      37

2.10.4    Duration of Fertile Period in Turkey Hen                                                                  38

2.10.5     Evaluation of Fertility and Hatchability                                                                                39

2.11.0    Factors influence Fertility                                                                                          39

2.11.1  Age Factor                                                                                                                  40

2.11.2  Body weight of the Hen                                                                                              40

2.11.3  Nutrition                                                                                                                     41

2.11.4  Stress                                                                                                                          41



MATERIALS AND METHODS                                                                                          42

  • Location and Duration of the study                                                                             42

3.2. Plan of the Study                                                                                                                         42

3.3. EXPERIMENTAL MATERIALS                                                                                  42

3.3.1. Materials and Processing                                                                                              42

3.3.2  Procurement and Management of Experimental Animals                                            43

3.3.3. Training of Toms for Semen Collection                                                                        44

3.4 Data Collection                                                                                                                 44

3.4.1 The Effect of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Body Weight:                                      44

3.4.2. Semen collection                                                                                                           45

3.5 Semen Evaluation                                                                                                             45

  1. 5.1 Semen Colour 45

3.5.2 Semen volume                                                                                                                45

3.5.3 Motility Evaluation                                                                                                        46

3.5.4 Sperm Concentration                                                                                                     46

3.5.5 Dead and Live /Normal and Abnormal Spermatozoa                                                   47

3.5.6    Sperm Morphological Evaluation                                                                               48

3.5.7    Biochemical Analysis                                                                                                  48

3.6       Fertility trial (Phase 1V: Fertility and Hatchability)                                                   48

3.6.1    Artificial insemination                                                                                                48

3.6.2    Egg collection, storage and hatchability                                                                     49

  • Experimental Design                                                                                                   50
    • Statistical analysis 50


Chapter Four


4.1 Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Body Weight (kg) 51
4.1.1 Effects of M.  oleifera supplementation on Semen Colour and Volume 52
4.1.2 Effects of Moringa oleifera on Progressive Motility 53
4.1.3 Effects of Moringa oleifera on Sperm concentration 54
4.1.4 Effects of Moringa oleifera on Sperm Viability (Live/Dead) 55
4.1.5 Effects of Moringa oleifera on Sperm Morphology 56
4.2.1 Effects of Gongronema latifolium on Semen Colour and Volume 57
4.2.2 Effects of Gongronema latifolium on Progressive Motility 58
4.2.3 Effects of Gongronema latifolium on Sperm Concentration 59
4.2.4 Effects of Gongronema latifolium on Sperm Viability (Live/Dead Ratio) 59
4.3.1 Effects of Gongronema latifolium on Sperm Morphology 60
4.3.2 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Semen colour and Volume 62
4.3.3 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Progressive Motility 62
4.3.3 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Sperm Concentration 63
4.3.4 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Sperm Viability 64
4.4.1 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Sperm Morphology 65
4.4.2 Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium inclusion on Percent Fertility of toms Semen 66
4.4.3 Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Percent Dead -in- Shell Embryos 68
4.5.1 Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Percentage Hatched Eggs 69
4.5.2 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Percent Dead-in -Shell Embryos 70
4.5.3 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Percent Egg Hatchability 72
4.6.1 Effect of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Fructose Concentration in Toms Semen 73
4.6.2 Cations Concentration in Tom Semen fed varying levels of M. oleifera and G.latifolium 74
4.7.1 Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Fructose Composition of Turkey Toms Semen 75
4.8.1 Associations between semen quality parameters and body weight of treated tom 76



5.0. 0  Summary and Recommendation                                                                                               78

5.1. 0  Summary                                                                                                                      78

5.2.0   Recommendations                                                                                                        79



Table 1:   Vitamin and mineral content of Moringa Oleifera leaf                                           15

Table 2:  Phytochemicals/Vitamins composition of Gongronema Latifolium                        18

Table3:  Seminal characteristics of Domestic animals                                                            26

Table 4:   Species Differences in Chemical Composition of Seminal Plasma                         30

Table 5: Composition of the Experimental Diets M. oleifera (MO): G. latifolium (GL)        43

Table 6: Treatments combination of Factorial Experimental Arrangement                            44

Table7: Treatment Arrangement                                                                                             44

Table 8: The Effects M. oleifera on Semen Characteristics of Turkey Toms                           52

Table 9: The Effects of G. latifolium on Semen Characteristics of Turkey Toms                               57

Table 10 Combined Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Semen quality Traits of Toms.         62

Table 11: Effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Fertility and Hatchability of Turkey Eggs         66

Table 12: Combined Effect of M. oleifera and G. latifolium on Fertility and Egg

Hatchability of Turkey Tom’s semen                                                                       70

Table 13: Chemical Composition of Semen 0f Turkey supplemented with M. oleifera

or G. latifolium                                                                                                         72

Table 14: Chemical Composition Turkey Semen Fed Combined level of M. oleifera and

  1. latifolium                                                                                                            74

Table 15:   Measures of Association Between Body Weight and Semen Characteristics

of Tom                                                                                                                    76


Figure 1: Semen collection, evaluation and insemination                                                       45

Figure 2: Slide preparation                                                                                                      48

Figure 3: Effect of treatments on body weights of Turkeys across weeks                             51

Figure 4: Viability and morphological examination (Stained spermatozoa)                           56

Figure 5:  Hatched live poult and dead in-shell embryos                                                       71



The experiment was conducted to determine semen quality, fertility, egg hatchability and some biochemical parameters in Nigerian local turkey toms fed diets containing Moringa oleifera (MO), Gongronema latifolium (GL) leaf meals and their combinations. A total of 72 Nigerian local turkeys comprising of 54 males and 18 females were used for the study. The males were randomly divided into 9 treatment groups, each treatment was replicated 3 times with 2 toms per replicate. The treatment diets were given only to the toms, starting from three month of age through the experimental period. The experimental animals were fed and given water properly, twice a day without restriction. All the management practices were carried out to the best of ability. The males in all the treatment groups were weighed weekly to determine their daily and weekly body weight gain. At 26 weeks of age, toms were trained for semen collection, and 32 weeks of age, semen was collected using abdominal massages. Samples were analyzed for colour, volume, progressive motility, sperm concentration, viability and sperm morphology. Fresh semen sample were also collected per treatment in vials’ stored in ice block and analyzed for fructose, Na and K.  A total of 18 hens were randomly shared 2 per treatment corresponding to the 9 treatments. Pooled Semen from each treatment was used to inseminate the hens twice a week at the beginning of egg lay and once a week subsequently. A total of 225 eggs were collected and incubated in weekly batches, analyzed for fertility and hatchability. The result revealed that M. oleifera and G. latifolium leaf meals had significant (P<0.05) effects on the semen quality parameters measured. M. oleifera fed tom at 3kg yielded the best result: ejaculate volume 0.58ml, motility= 92.93%, Conc.= 4.82(x10/ml 9), live sperm= 94.13%, normal sperm 91.38% and corresponding lower values for percentage dead and abnormal sperm. While, G. latifolium treated toms had a lower value for their semen quality parameters when compared with the control group. Interaction effects of M. oleifera and G. latifolium leaf meals were significantly (P<0.05) different. Compared with control semen quality traits were higher at 3kgMO+1.5kgGL inclusion, lower at 1.5kgMO + 1.5kgGL, and significantly reduced semen quality of toms fed 1.5kgMO+ 3kgGL diets.  Similarly, the percent fertile eggs, and percent hatched eggs were greatly improved at 3kgMO diets with corresponding decrease in percent infertile eggs and dead in shell embryos than the control. However, toms fed diet at 1.5kgGL and 3kgGL had their values for these parameters being severely reduced. Hatchability values increased to 88.39%  and 83.33% at 3kg MO+1.5kgGL and 3kg MO+3kgGL respectively with a decrease in percent dead- in- shell embryos to 16.99% and 19.12% respectively. Seminal fructose concentration (mg/100ml) was significantly (P<0.05) increased (5.86+2.76) at 3kgGL when compared with the control, but M. oleifera had a negligible increase in fructose concentration. However, M. oleifera fed toms (3kg) had a significant(P<0.05) increase in concentration of Na and K (0.39 and  0.35) respectively. These result suggest that improved fertility, eggs hatchability and reduction in percent embryo mortality can be achieved using M. oleifera at 3kg/100kg diet  and combination of M. oleifera+G. latifolium at rate of 3kgMO+1.5kgGL, but treatment with G.latifolium at the rate of 1.5kg, 3kg and combination at rate of 1.5kgMO +3kgGL caused reduced fertility in local Nigerian turkey.




  • Background of the study

In Nigeria, poultry industry is once again experiencing growth due to the current regime’s effort at encouraging investments in the industry through several economic and agricultural policies and reforms including removal of import duties on agricultural products (Fasina et al., 2007). Notwithstanding, the current trend in growth within the industry it is still experiencing challenges as some species of poultry are left out. For instance, turkey production has not been as successful as chicken production in Nigeria. Its production is largely at the small holder level. This has been attributed to high cost of feed, inconsistencies in feeding program as well as lack of information on its nutritional requirements (Ojewola et al., 2002). Also, reproductive problems experienced under natural mating conditions, low fertility and poor hatchability as a result of poor quality semen due to oxidative stress amongst other factors (Bucak et al., 2010) militate against turkey production in Nigeria.  This situation is also evident from the FAO report (FAOStat, 2011), which shows that the population of  local turkeys in Nigeria is only about 1.05 million, being the smallest when compared with other poultry species. It is important to come to terms with the fact that advancement in the industry depends on the use of birds with high reproductive rate, adoption of better mating methods, use of high quality semen in insemination as well as good nutrition.