Yucca schidigera



  • Anticoccidial
  • Antioxidant
  • Antiprotozoal
  • Antiarthritic
  • Antibacterial
  • Antiviral
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Ammonia-reduction
  • Hepatoprotective
Yucca schidigera is a medicinal plant native to southwestern United States and northern Mexico which has been used in traditional medicine by Native Americans to treat a variety of ailments. Yucca is one of the richest commercial sources of steroidal saponins and polyphenols such as resveratrol. Yucca is sold commercially as a dietary supplement for humans and animals in the form of a powder, extract, and juice. Some of the beneficial properties of yucca specific to poultry include:

Antiprotozoal activity. Yucca is as effective as the anti-protozoal drug metronidazole in treating giardiasis and other protozoal diseases in which part of the life cycle occurs in the gastrointestinal tract. The anti-protozoal activity of Yucca is due to the saponins, which act by complexing with cholesterol in protozoal cell membranes, causing damage to the integrity of the membrane, and cell lysis.

There have been numerous studies on the anticoccidial properties related to adding yucca to the diet of chickens. When given as 250 mg/kg of the diet, yucca may influence the immune response of birds challenged with mixed Eimeria oocysts (M Oelschlager et al., 2019). Yucca supplementation helped promote regeneration and reconstitution of the intestinal mucosal layer within the GI tract of infected birds (M Oelschlager et al., 2019).

Ammonia reduction. Yucca can help reduce ammonia concentrations and odor in feces. Adding 100 ppm of yucca to the diet of laying hens, along with removing the manure every other day, helped reduce NH3 generat4ion and emission in laying hen barns (H Chepete et al., 2012).

Anti-arthritic. Yucca is commonly used as a dietary additive in horses, dogs, and humans for the treatment and prevention of arthritis.

Lowering blood cholesterol levels. Dietary yucca extract lowers total and LDL cholesterol levels in hypercholesterolemic humans

Antibacterial. The addition of 20 mg/kg Yucca extract to the diet of laying hens demonstrated positive effects on egg weight and feed efficiency, decreased the serum and yolk cholesterol concentration and reduced the proliferation of Escherichia coli (J Wang et al., 2010).

Nutritional. Yucca may aid in the digestion and absorption of vitamins and minerals in the GI tract.

Poultry Specific Studies

TypePlant PartDosageSpecific useResultsRef
Broilerspowder125 mg/kg of dietUse of Yucca powder in broiler ration could be beneficial to maintain the litter quality, which directly enhances the productivity in broiler production without any adverse effect.Sahoo, Sarada Prasanna, et al., 2015
Broilersextract100-200 mg/kg of dietantioxidantThe addition of yucca extract to the diet of broilers helped improve feed efficiency, immune and antioxidative function.Su, Jun-Ling, et al., 2016
Broilersextract100-300 mg/kg of dietantioxidativepromoted growth performance in broilers as well as exhibited liver antioxidative ability during finisher period.D Sun et al., 2017
Chickensextract120-180 ppm of dietheat stressameliorates the adverse effects of heat stress on chicken growth and feed efficiency.R Razaei et al., 2017
Hensextract50-200 ppm of dietammonia reductionadding 100 ppm of yucca in the laying-hen diet coupled with frequent manure removal (once every 1 to 2 d) would be conducive to reducing NH3 generation and emission in laying-hen barns.H Chepete et al., 2012
Hensextract100 mg/kg of dietantioxidantcan be used as effective feed additive to improve productive performance, blood profile, and antioxidant enzyme activities in laying hens.M Alagawany et al., 2015
Chickensextract100 mg/kg of dietantiviralimproved growth performance and immunological functions in broilers.D Sun et al., 2017
Quailextract100-200 mg/kg of dietPb-induced poisoningdemonstrates the potential modulatory effect of YSE against the Pb-induced toxic effects in different organs of Japanese quails.M Farag et al., 2018
Chickensextract250 mg/kg of dietanticoccidialmay provide some immunomodulatory effects during a mixed coccidian challenge as evidenced by lymphocyte responses, changes in intestinal structure, and alterations in cecal and duodenal inflammatory cytokine mRNA expression.M Oelschlager et al., 2019
Broilerspowder100 mg/kg of dietantioxidantcould improve antioxidant status and attenuate the heat stress response by regulating hypothalamic temperature-sensing genes in growing chickens. Besides, yucca supplementation improved feed intake probably through modulating CCK in growing broilers under high ambient temperature.J Luo et al., 2022
Broilersextract500 g/T of dietanticoccidialconsistently showed lower numbers for OPG counts compared to the anticoccidial and challenged group.K Kozlowski et al., 2022
Chickenspowderoverall healthbeneficial to maintain the litter quality, which directly enhances the productivity in broiler production without any adverse effect.S Sahoo et al., 2015