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.

    We have a manual that explains all the features 

Record number 440534
Title The prevention and control of feather pecking in laying hens: identifying the underlying principles
Author(s) Rodenburg, T.B.; Krimpen, M.M. van; Jong, I.C. de; Haas, E.N. de; Kops, M.S.; Riedstra, B.J.; Nordquist, R.E.; Wagenaar, J.P.; Bestman, M.W.P.; Nicol, C.J.
Source Worlds Poultry Science Journal 69 (2013)2. - ISSN 0043-9339 - p. 361 - 374.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1017/S0043933913000354
Department(s) Behavioral Ecology
Animal Nutrition
Animal Health & Welfare
Adaptation Physiology
WIAS
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2013
Keyword(s) nonstarch polysaccharide concentration - gallus-gallus-domesticus - heart-rate-variability - open-field response - rhode-island red - tonic immobility - nutrient dilution - manual restraint - eating behavior - different ages
Abstract Feather pecking (FP) in laying hens remains an important economic and welfare issue. This paper reviews the literature on causes of FP in laying hens. With the ban on conventional cages in the EU from 2012 and the expected future ban on beak trimming in many European countries, addressing this welfare issue has become more pressing than ever. The aim of this review paper is to provide a detailed overview of underlying principles of FP. FP is affected by many different factors and any approach to prevent or reduce FP in commercial flocks should acknowledge that fact and use a multifactorial approach to address this issue. Two forms of FP can be distinguished: gentle FP and severe FP. Severe FP causes the most welfare issues in commercial flocks. Severe FP is clearly related to feeding and foraging behaviour and its development seems to be enhanced in conditions where birds have difficulty in coping with environmental stressors. Stimulating feeding and foraging behaviour by providing high-fibre diets and suitable litter from an early age onwards, and controlling fear and stress levels through genetic selection, reducing maternal stress and improving the stockmanship skills of the farmer, together offer the best prospect for preventing or controlling FP.
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