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Record number 525332
Title Effects of divergent selection for natural antibodies on fearfulness and feather damage of laying hens
Author(s) Nguyen Ba, Hieu; Kroeske, Kikianne; Berghof, T.V.L.; Rodenburg, T.B.
Source In: Xth European Symposium on Poultry Welfare, 19-22 June 2017, Ploufragan - France. - World's Poultry Science Association (WPSA) - p. 57 - 57.
Event Xth European Symposium on Poultry Welfare 2017, Ploufragan, 2017-06-19/2017-06-22
Department(s) Behavioural Ecology
Adaptation Physiology
Animal Breeding and Genetics
Publication type Abstract in scientific journal or proceedings
Publication year 2017
Keyword(s) broiler breeders - nesting behaviour - genetics - nest design - housing - climate - natural antibodies - feather pecking - fearfulness - behavioural tests - serotonergic system
Abstract Broilers have been selected for growth related characteristics, which are negatively correlated to reproductive traits. This genetic background creates challenges in broiler breeders, as the hens do not make optimal use of the nests provided. This project aims to investigate what factors determine nesting behaviour, i.e. where a broiler breeder hen prefers to lay her eggs. Factors such as genetic background, social interactions, physical characteristics of the nest and climate might interfere with the natural nesting behaviour of the hen. Also fundamental trade-offs between different motivations, such as hunger, comfort and safety, might influence nesting behaviour. Behaviour and use of space will be measured in experimental set-ups in order to gain insight in the importance of different system components. This knowledge will be used to optimise housing conditions and develop strategies that stimulate the hen to lay her egg in the nest. The performance of this improved system will be tested in field experiments to investigate the transferability of results from experimental to field conditions.
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