Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Abstract

Feather pecking (FP) is a major welfare and economic problem in the laying hen industry, as it can cause feather damage and could lead to injuries or even mortality of victims. FP is multifactorial and has been related to behaviours such as fearfulness. Gut microbiota might contribute to FP, as it influences behaviours in rodent models that have been linked to FP such as anxiety. Moreover, recent studies have found that high and low FP lines differ in their cecal microbial metabolites and composition. However, it is unknown whether a causal link between the gut microbiota and FP exists. Therefore, we orally administered adult microbiota to newly hatched chicks (daily, day 0-14 of age). We used genetic lines selected for high (HFP, n = 288) and low (LFP, n = 288) FP. The microbiota transplants were collected from pooled gut content of 30 week old HFP and LFP donor birds. Each line received either HFP microbiota, LFP microbiota or control treatment. FP behaviour was observed via direct observations on pen-level between 0-5, 8-10 and 13-15 weeks of age. Furthermore, birds were tested in two behavioural tests; the Novel Object (NO) test at 3 days and 5 weeks of age and the Open Field (OF) test at 13 weeks of age. Although we did not find an effect of line*treatment interactions or treatment on FP, we did observe that birds treated with LFP microbiota stepped sooner (P < 0.01) and more and vocalized sooner compared to the control treated birds during the OF test (P < 0.05). Additionally, they stepped sooner during the OF, yet took longer to approach the NO compared to HFP microbiota groups (P < 0.05). Therefore, we conclude that early-life microbiota treatment affects behavioural responses, which might be related to fearfulness, social motivation or coping style.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2018
EventBenelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018 - Experimental Poultry Centre, Geel, Belgium
Duration: 10 Oct 201810 Oct 2018

Conference

ConferenceBenelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018
Abbreviated titleISAE Benelux 2018
CountryBelgium
CityGeel
Period10/10/1810/10/18

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feather pecking
birds
fearfulness
intestinal microorganisms
testing
microbiome
genetic lines
anxiety
feathers
laying hens
rodents
digestive system
chicks
metabolites
industry
economics

Cite this

van de Weetering, Y., van der Eijk, J. A. J., Lammers, A., & Rodenburg, T. B. (2018). Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines. Abstract from Benelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018, Geel, Belgium.
van de Weetering, Y. ; van der Eijk, J.A.J. ; Lammers, A. ; Rodenburg, T.B. / Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines. Abstract from Benelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018, Geel, Belgium.
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title = "Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines",
abstract = "Feather pecking (FP) is a major welfare and economic problem in the laying hen industry, as it can cause feather damage and could lead to injuries or even mortality of victims. FP is multifactorial and has been related to behaviours such as fearfulness. Gut microbiota might contribute to FP, as it influences behaviours in rodent models that have been linked to FP such as anxiety. Moreover, recent studies have found that high and low FP lines differ in their cecal microbial metabolites and composition. However, it is unknown whether a causal link between the gut microbiota and FP exists. Therefore, we orally administered adult microbiota to newly hatched chicks (daily, day 0-14 of age). We used genetic lines selected for high (HFP, n = 288) and low (LFP, n = 288) FP. The microbiota transplants were collected from pooled gut content of 30 week old HFP and LFP donor birds. Each line received either HFP microbiota, LFP microbiota or control treatment. FP behaviour was observed via direct observations on pen-level between 0-5, 8-10 and 13-15 weeks of age. Furthermore, birds were tested in two behavioural tests; the Novel Object (NO) test at 3 days and 5 weeks of age and the Open Field (OF) test at 13 weeks of age. Although we did not find an effect of line*treatment interactions or treatment on FP, we did observe that birds treated with LFP microbiota stepped sooner (P < 0.01) and more and vocalized sooner compared to the control treated birds during the OF test (P < 0.05). Additionally, they stepped sooner during the OF, yet took longer to approach the NO compared to HFP microbiota groups (P < 0.05). Therefore, we conclude that early-life microbiota treatment affects behavioural responses, which might be related to fearfulness, social motivation or coping style.",
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year = "2018",
month = "10",
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note = "Benelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018, ISAE Benelux 2018 ; Conference date: 10-10-2018 Through 10-10-2018",

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van de Weetering, Y, van der Eijk, JAJ, Lammers, A & Rodenburg, TB 2018, 'Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines' Benelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018, Geel, Belgium, 10/10/18 - 10/10/18, .

Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines. / van de Weetering, Y.; van der Eijk, J.A.J.; Lammers, A.; Rodenburg, T.B.

2018. Abstract from Benelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018, Geel, Belgium.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

TY - CONF

T1 - Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines

AU - van de Weetering, Y.

AU - van der Eijk, J.A.J.

AU - Lammers, A.

AU - Rodenburg, T.B.

PY - 2018/10/10

Y1 - 2018/10/10

N2 - Feather pecking (FP) is a major welfare and economic problem in the laying hen industry, as it can cause feather damage and could lead to injuries or even mortality of victims. FP is multifactorial and has been related to behaviours such as fearfulness. Gut microbiota might contribute to FP, as it influences behaviours in rodent models that have been linked to FP such as anxiety. Moreover, recent studies have found that high and low FP lines differ in their cecal microbial metabolites and composition. However, it is unknown whether a causal link between the gut microbiota and FP exists. Therefore, we orally administered adult microbiota to newly hatched chicks (daily, day 0-14 of age). We used genetic lines selected for high (HFP, n = 288) and low (LFP, n = 288) FP. The microbiota transplants were collected from pooled gut content of 30 week old HFP and LFP donor birds. Each line received either HFP microbiota, LFP microbiota or control treatment. FP behaviour was observed via direct observations on pen-level between 0-5, 8-10 and 13-15 weeks of age. Furthermore, birds were tested in two behavioural tests; the Novel Object (NO) test at 3 days and 5 weeks of age and the Open Field (OF) test at 13 weeks of age. Although we did not find an effect of line*treatment interactions or treatment on FP, we did observe that birds treated with LFP microbiota stepped sooner (P < 0.01) and more and vocalized sooner compared to the control treated birds during the OF test (P < 0.05). Additionally, they stepped sooner during the OF, yet took longer to approach the NO compared to HFP microbiota groups (P < 0.05). Therefore, we conclude that early-life microbiota treatment affects behavioural responses, which might be related to fearfulness, social motivation or coping style.

AB - Feather pecking (FP) is a major welfare and economic problem in the laying hen industry, as it can cause feather damage and could lead to injuries or even mortality of victims. FP is multifactorial and has been related to behaviours such as fearfulness. Gut microbiota might contribute to FP, as it influences behaviours in rodent models that have been linked to FP such as anxiety. Moreover, recent studies have found that high and low FP lines differ in their cecal microbial metabolites and composition. However, it is unknown whether a causal link between the gut microbiota and FP exists. Therefore, we orally administered adult microbiota to newly hatched chicks (daily, day 0-14 of age). We used genetic lines selected for high (HFP, n = 288) and low (LFP, n = 288) FP. The microbiota transplants were collected from pooled gut content of 30 week old HFP and LFP donor birds. Each line received either HFP microbiota, LFP microbiota or control treatment. FP behaviour was observed via direct observations on pen-level between 0-5, 8-10 and 13-15 weeks of age. Furthermore, birds were tested in two behavioural tests; the Novel Object (NO) test at 3 days and 5 weeks of age and the Open Field (OF) test at 13 weeks of age. Although we did not find an effect of line*treatment interactions or treatment on FP, we did observe that birds treated with LFP microbiota stepped sooner (P < 0.01) and more and vocalized sooner compared to the control treated birds during the OF test (P < 0.05). Additionally, they stepped sooner during the OF, yet took longer to approach the NO compared to HFP microbiota groups (P < 0.05). Therefore, we conclude that early-life microbiota treatment affects behavioural responses, which might be related to fearfulness, social motivation or coping style.

M3 - Abstract

ER -

van de Weetering Y, van der Eijk JAJ, Lammers A, Rodenburg TB. Early-life microbiota transplantation affects behavioural responses in feather pecking selection lines. 2018. Abstract from Benelux Conference of the International Society for Applied Ethology 2018, Geel, Belgium.