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Forskningsartikel - Refereegranskat, 2002

Effect of nest design, passages, and hybrid on use of nest and production performance of layers in furnished cages

Wall H, Tauson R, Elwinger K


Production performance, including egg quality, and proportion of eggs laid in nests were studied in furnished experimental cages incorporating nests, litter baths, and perches. The study comprised a total of 972 hens of two genotypes: Lohmann Selected Leghorn (LSL) and Hy-Line White. The birds were studied from 20 to 80 wk of age, and conventional four-hen cages were included as a reference. In furnished cages for six hens, the effects of 30 or 50% vs. 100% nest bottom lining (Astro turf(R)) were studied with LSL hens. Nest bottom lining had no significant effect on egg production or proportions of cracked or dirty eggs, but the use of nests was significantly higher in cages incorporating nests with 100% lining, compared with 50 or 30%. The two hybrids were compared when housed in large, group-furnished cages for 14 or 16 hens of two designs; with a rear partition with two pop holes or fully open, i.e., no rear partition. LSL birds produced significantly better and had a significantly lower proportion of cracked eggs. There was no difference between H- and O-cages, either in production or in egg quality. LSL birds laid a significantly lower proportion of eggs in the nests, especially in O-cages, implying a significant hybrid x cage interaction. When housed in conventional cages, the hybrids did not differ in proportion of cracked eggs but differed in production traits. It was concluded that with the present nest design, the proportion of nest bottom lining cannot be reduced without affecting birds' use of nests, but the proportion did not affect exterior egg quality. The effect of genotype should be considered in the further development of furnished cages

Publicerad i

Poultry Science
2002, Volym: 81, nummer: 3, sidor: 333-339