Production performance of broiler breeders under cage versus floor housing systems

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Research Paper 01/07/2018
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Production performance of broiler breeders under cage versus floor housing systems

Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan, Sarzamin Khan
Int. J. Biosci.13( 1), 448-461, July 2018.
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Research trials were conducted at commercial farms (n=20,000) to evaluate the production performance of meat-type floored and cage housed Hubbard breeder flocks during 1st egg lay cycle under controlled environment. Hens (n=20,000) were divided into two groups, housed in cages (n=10,000) or floored (n=10,000) and were artificially inseminated weekly.  The cage housed hens consumed 10% less (P<.01) feed, than floored hens.  Feed intake gradually increased (P<.01) from pre-peak through peak stage of egg lay and then declined after the peak, supplemented (P<.01) by the interaction of housing and production stages.  Consequently, the trend for feed conversion ratio (FCR) per dozen of eggs was reversed (P<.01) both for floored (3.80±0.86 kg) and cage housed (2.65±0.45 kg) hens. Survival rate was higher (P<.01) in cage housing (99.74±0.07) by (0.05%) than floor (99.69±0.09) that declined with advancement in stage of production.  Floored hens were heavier (P<.01) than cage housed hens whereas the cockerels’ weight was similar (P>.05).  Cage housed flocks had (3%) more (P<.01) egg lay (70.60±12.75) with 4% more (P<.05) settable eggs (95.99±14.00) that hatched (86.46±4.24) better (P<.01) than floored flocks (67.35±15.04; 91.99±14.00; 84.46±8.95). The quality of chicks was equally (P>.05) better in both housings that improved (P<.01) with advancement in production.  Neither egg quality parameters nor weight of chicks they hatched differed (P>.05) with housing although significantly (P<.01) increased as the production stage advanced.  The levels of biochemical and haematological parameters were almost similar (P>.05) in all flocks.  Better performance of caged flocks leads us to recommend cage housing.


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