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Effects of stocking density, light and perches on broiler growth

Velo, Ramón, Ceular, Angel
Animal science journal = 2017 v.88 no.2 pp. 386-393
body weight, breasts, carcass weight, chickens, color, lamps, light intensity, stocking rate, temperature, thighs
The aim of this study was to determine the effect of stocking density, light intensity and light color on broiler growth. The experiment consisted of four 35‐day phases during each of which 320 chickens were surveyed. The research was performed at stocking densities of four and six birds/m². Illuminances of 15 and 30 lx were obtained through commercial lamps with 4000 K and 6000 K color temperatures. Lighting was used 17 h a day, between 06.00 and 23.00 hours (17 L:7 D). The results showed a decrease in body, carcass, breast and thighs weight (P < 0.05) with the increase in stocking density. Body weight decreased by 10.5% and carcass weight decreased by 9.4% at six birds/m² stocking density. Contrastingly, no differences were found for the tested light colors. Increasing illuminance from 15 to 30 lx caused a 1.9% decrease in body weight. The analysis of the effect of perches revealed that using perches significantly increased body (2.5%) and breast weight (11.8%). The interactions between light intensity or color and stocking density and between light intensity and light color were analyzed.