Main content area

Influence of temperature during growth on responses of hens to high or low temperatures during lay

Kyarisiima, C.C., Balnave, D.
British poultry science 1996 v.37 no.3 pp. 553-562
egg weight, hens, pullets, feed intake, laying performance, ambient temperature, body weight, feed conversion, mortality, egg shell thickness, egg yolk, egg albumen, egg shell, weight, wattles, liver, oviducts, ovaries, abdominal fat
Commercial pullets were grown at cool (10 degrees - 20 degrees C) or hot (25 degrees - 35 degrees C) temperatures to similar bodyweights at 18 weeks of age. Between 18 and 50 weeks the birds were either kept at the same temperatures as during growth or transferred to the alternate temperature. Birds kept at the cool temperatures throughout life ate most food and gave the best production during lay. Minimum food intake and poorest performance were obtained with birds kept at the hot temperatures throughout life. Performance in the hot environment during lay was improved by rearing birds in the cool environment, the response being related to an increased food intake. Food intake in the cool environment during lay was reduced, with only minor effects on performance, in birds which had been reared in the hot environment. The results of the present study show that production responses during lay are affected by the temperatures experienced by hens during both growth and lay.