Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 494970
Title Lighting schedule and dimming period in early life: consequences for broiler chicken leg bone development
Author(s) Pol, C.W. van der; Molenaar, Roos; Buitink, J.; Roovert-Reijrink, I.A.M. van; Maatjens, C.M.; Brand, H. van den; Kemp, B.
Source Poultry Science 94 (2015)12. - ISSN 0032-5791 - p. 2980 - 2988.
Department(s) Adaptation Physiology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2015
Keyword(s) bone development - light-dark schedule - dimming - broiler
Abstract Prolonged (>20 h) light periods during grow-out of broiler chickens have been shown to increase the occurrence of skeletal abnormalities, but the effects of early life light-dark schedules are not well known. The present experiment investigated the effect of lighting schedule and light-dark transition during the first days of a broiler chicken's life on leg bone development. In 2 experiments, Ross-308 broiler chicks (n = 2,500 per experiment) were subjected to 1 of 5 treatments for 4 d: 24L; 2L:1D lighting schedule with either an abrupt or gradual light-dark transition (“dimming”); and a 2L:6D lighting schedule with an abrupt transition or dimming. At d 4, tibia and femur weight, length, and diameter, yolk free body mass, organ weights, realized weight gain, feed intake, feed conversion ratio, and mortality were determined. In Experiment 2, chick length and relative asymmetry of the femur and tibia were determined additionally. Data were analyzed using orthogonal contrasts. 24L resulted in higher femur diameter (P < 0.028; both experiments), tibia diameter (P < 0.001; Experiment 1), relative asymmetry of tibia length (P = 0.002; Experiment 2), and relative asymmetry of femur length (P = 0.003) than applying a light-dark schedule. A 2L:1D lighting schedule resulted in higher femur length (P = 0.039; Experiment 1) and relative asymmetry of tibia length (P = 0.032; Experiment 2) and lower relative asymmetry of tibia diameter (P = 0.016) than a 2L:6D lighting schedule. An abrupt light-dark transition resulted in higher relative asymmetry of tibia length (P = 0.004; Experiment 2) and relative asymmetry of tibia diameter (P = 0.018) than dimming. To conclude, leg bone development in the first 4 d of a broiler chicken's life was higher for 24L than when a lighting schedule was applied, but relative asymmetry was higher as well, suggesting developmental instability. The effect of dimming on leg bone development was less pronounced, but the decreased relative asymmetry levels in the dimming treatment suggested lower environmental stress than for the abrupt light-dark transition.
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