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Title: Brooding light intensity effects on broiler performance

item BROWN, A
item Buhr, Richard - Jeff

Submitted to: Southern Poultry Science Society Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/28/2006
Publication Date: 1/8/2007
Citation: Brown, A., Fairchild, B.D., Buhr, R.J., Webster, A.B. 2007. Brooding light intensity effects on broiler performance. Southern Poultry Science Society Meeting Abstracts.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Light intensity is an environmental factor which is used with a high degree of variation throughout the US Broiler Industry. Light intensity influences bird activity, immune response, growth rate and has been used to alleviate mortality issues related to metabolic disease (spiking mortality). The objective of the current study was to determine the effect of light intensity during the 10 days of brooding on bird performance. Two trials were conducted utilizing three light intensities (15, 25, 45 lux). Each light intensity treatment was applied to chicks from day 1 through day 10. After day 10, the light intensity was reduced to 5 lux in each room. Each light treatment was applied to two rooms with six pens in each room. A bird density of 0.7 ft. sq. was used resulting in 40 birds per pen. Water and a standard broiler diet were provided ad libitum. Broiler management protocols followed the breeder company recommend guidelines. In Trial 1, 25 lux resulted in significantly greater BW gain and gain to feed ratio but lower feed consumption at 7 days while 45 lux resulted in significantly greater BW gain at 21d. In Trial 2, BW gain and gain to feed were significantly greater for 25 and 45 lux when compared to 15 lux. No significant differences were noted among the treatments at 42 days of age in either trial. While there were differences in the results between the two trials, similar trends were apparent with the broilers provided 15 lux having the poorest performance. The results of the current study suggest that having light intensity too low (15 lux) during the brooding period will have negative results on broiler performance. The data from Trial 2 suggests that higher intensity light may be beneficial to broiler performance, but due to differences between the two trials the effects of intensities above 25 lux are inconclusive at this time.