Live Performance, Carcass Yield, and Welfare of Broilers of Different Genetic Strains Reared at Different Housing Densities
Arruda, JNT, Mendes, AS, Guirro, ECBP, Schneider, M, Sikorski, RR, Sausen, L, Dias, ER, Bonamigo, DV
Rev. Bras. Cienc. Avic.
DATA DE PUBLICAÇÃO
Abstract This study evaluated the performance, carcass yield and quality, and physiological stress indicators of broilers of three genetic strains reared at three housing densities for 29 days. A total of 828 day-old male chicks, with average initial weight of 40.0± 2.0g were used. Three genetic strains (Cobb 500, Ross 808, and Ross 508, with 276 birds each) and three housing densities (17, 19, and 21 broilers/m²) were tested. A completely randomized experimental design in a 3 x 3 factorial arrangement, with four replicates of 23 birds each, was applied. The following responses were evaluated: performance parameters (average weekly body weight, average daily gain, feed intake, feed conversion ratio), physiological stress indicators (blood glucose levels, blood cell counts), and carcass yield and quality (dermatosis, bruising, dermatitis, and femoral degeneration scores). Average weekly body weight (BW) and daily weight gain (DWG) were not influenced by rearing density (p≥0.05), but Cobb 500 broilers were the heaviest during the analyzed period. In the second week, Ross 508 birds showed better feed conversion ratio (FCR) when housed at the density of 17 broilers/m² (p≤0.001), whereas the best FCR of Ross 808 and Cobb 500 broilers was obtained at 21 broilers/m² (p≤0.001). Carcass yield was not influenced by the treatments (p≥0.05). Physiological stress indicators were not affected by the treatments, and remained within normal ranges (p≥0.05). Dermatosis scores (scratches) increased (p≤0.05) when housing density increased from 17 to 19 broilers /m².
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