Date of Graduation
Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design
Animal and Nutritional Sciences
Ronald A. Peterson.
Two separate trials were conducted to compare egg production, egg weight, shell thickness, albumin height, fertility, and mortality of naturally mated broiler breeders maintained on either a slat and litter floor or in two tiered colony cages. In the first trial there was no difference (P > 0.05) in egg production between the two treatments. There was also no significant difference in hen mortality. Higher (P < 0.05) egg shell quality, albumin height, and shell thickness were observed in the cage maintained hens. Lower fertility (P < 0.05) was observed in the cage maintained hens. In the second trial production parameters were compared in naturally mated broiler breeders maintained on slat and litter floor, in colony cages on the original slats, and in colony cages on a modified slats. The modified slats were constructed from plastic and had a two piece design which produced a slight cushioning on the top of the slats. Egg production and mortality were not different (P > 0.05) among the three treatments. Eggshell thickness, albumin height, and shell thickness were lower (P > 0.05) in the litter and slat floor but not between the two cage treatments (P > 0.05). Fertility was higher (P 0.05) between the two cage treatments. Future studies to improve fertility in colony cage maintained broiler breeders could allow increased stocking rates in existing broiler breeder houses.
Massey, Joseph Wayne, "Comparison of broiler breeder production and fertility in a colony cage system with two different floors versus a slat-floor system" (2002). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 703.