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Zipporah Mwaniki

Position/Title: Research Assistant
Phone: (519) 731-6841 ext. 58351
Office: ANNU 043

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I am a Masters by Thesis graduate Student in Poultry Nutrition at the Department of Animal Biosciences, University of Guelph. I work under Dr. Elijah Kiarie together with a team of researchers in the Monogastric Nutrition Lab at the Department. My research is on replacing soybean meal as a source of crude protein with Black Soldier Fly Larvae Meal in poultry diets. Feed prices have soared due to pressure on ingredients like corn and soybean for human food, the ethanol industry, and animal feed. The environmental effect from the soaring prices, including deforestation to create space for growing crops is a worrying thing too. By coming up with alternative sources of feed ingredients, not only will the pressure be reduced on the environment but also there will be more to feed increasing population of humans and animals. We are supplementing soybean meal with insect meal at different inclusion levels while taking note on effect on the productivity and antibiotic advantage. From the results, we have deduced that insect meal can comparatively replace soybean, and improve egg quality. I am in the process of publishing my first paper on the same and aspire to join the poultry industry as a nutrition consultant after I graduate and also further my research on the insect meal in other animal diets.

I hold  BSc. Agriculture degree from the University of Nairobi. After my undergraduate degree, I practiced farming and poultry rearing on my piece of land in Kenya and that is how I developed a great interest in poultry nutrition. Why Poultry nutrition and not farming? Having grown up in rural Kenya, I am fully aware of the trouble the rural people go through to meet their food requirements as well as enough feed for their few chickens and other farm animals. I am pursuing my Masters in poultry Nutrition to use the knowledge in enlightening global poultry farmers and also the rural poor back in my home country on widening the feed base for poultry. I aspire to become an animal  nutritionist and be able to advise poultry farmers all over the world about cost effective and balanced feed formulations. I am interested in swine nutrition and may pursue the field after my current research is done.