Skip to main content
ARS Home » Southeast Area » Athens, Georgia » U.S. National Poultry Research Center » Poultry Microbiological Safety & Processing Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #327112

Research Project: INTERVENTION STRATEGIES FOR FOODBORNE PATHOGENS DURING POULTRY PRODUCTION AND PROCESSING

Location: Poultry Microbiological Safety & Processing Research

Title: Microbiological status of broiler respiratory tracts before and after feed withdrawal during catching

Author
item Bourassa, Dianna
item Wilson, Kimberly
item Buhr, Richard - Jeff

Submitted to: Poultry Science Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/23/2016
Publication Date: 7/11/2016
Citation: Bourassa, D.V., Wilson, K.M., Buhr, R.J. 2016. Microbiological status of broiler respiratory tracts before and after feed withdrawal during catching [abstract]. Poultry Science Meeting. 95:(E-Suppl.1)70. p.24.

Interpretive Summary: none

Technical Abstract: A significant point of entry for Salmonella into a processing plant is within the broilers to be processed. Prior to transport to the processing plant, feed is withdrawn from the broilers for 4 h on the farm, then birds are caught and cooped. During catching, an increased presence of litter dust in the house air is visible and may affect the presence of bacteria within the respiratory tract. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of feed withdrawal plus catching on the levels of aerobic bacteria (APC) and the presence of Enterobacteriaceae (EB) and Salmonella within broiler respiratory tracts. To determine house Salmonella status, the litter was sampled for the presence of Salmonella using intermittently stepped-on-drag swabs at 5 wk of age, and all four houses were determined to be Salmonella positive. Also at 5 wk, the respiratory tracts from 5 full-fed male broilers per house were sampled for APC, EB, and Salmonella by respiratory tract flushing and the ceca were sampled only for Salmonella. At 6 wk, 5 full-fed male broilers and 5 feed/water withdrawn broilers were collected when half of the broilers were caught from each house, transported to the lab, and were sampled for APC, EB, and Salmonella in the respiratory tracts and for Salmonella in the ceca. At wk 5 broilers had 2.73 log10 cfu/mL APC, 8/20 EB positive, 11/20 Salmonella positive respiratory tracts, and 17/20 Salmonella positive ceca. The day prior to catching at 6 wk, broilers had 2.60 log10 cfu/mL APC, 8/20 EB positive, 10/20 Salmonella positive respiratory tracts, and 12/20 Salmonella positive ceca. Following feed/water withdrawal and catching, broilers had 3.06 log10 cfu/mL APC, 7/20 EB positive, 4/20 Salmonella positive respiratory tracts, and 11/20 Salmonella positive ceca. While the levels of APC and the prevalence of EB were not affected in respiratory tracts during catching, the prevalence of Salmonella was significantly decreased. All four Salmonella combinations occurred, positive respiratory tracts with positive ceca, positive respiratory tracts with negative ceca, negative respiratory tract with positive ceca, and negative respiratory tracts with negative ceca.