Huo X.,Suranaree University of Technology |
Huo X.,Southwest of Guizhou Vocational and Technical College for Nationalities |
Na-Lampang P.,Suranaree University of Technology
Asian Journal of Poultry Science | Year: 2012
The purpose of this study was to assess whether the Thai crossbred chickens can be raised at a higher stocking density than that recommended in Thailand. A total 900 day-old mixed sex Thai crossbred chickens (crossbred between Thai native males and the ISA Brown commercial layer type females) were assigned as 3 replicates of 100 birds per pen, to stocking densities of 8, 12 and 16 birds m2, respectively. Body Weight (BW), Body Weight Gam (BWG), Feed Intake (FI), Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR) and mortality rate of birds were recorded at weekly intervals. Data on welfare indicators (leg condition, feather damage scores, tonic immobility) were obtained at the 13 weeks of age. The results showed that in this study stocking density had no significant effects on BW, BWG, FI, FCR and mortality rate of chickens at 12 weeks of age. No leg problems of chickens were found in any treatment at 13 weeks of age. Although, no perfect feather of primaries and tail were found, the total body feather damage scores were similar in all treatments. Stocking density did not significantly affect tonic immobility duration of the chickens when stocking density was increased from 8 to 16 birds m2. It is thus concluded that Thai crossbred chickens could be raised up to 12 weeks of age in as high density as 16 birds m2 without any adverse effects. © 2012 Academic Journals Inc.