Field study on broilers' first-week mortality

H. Yassin, A.G.J. Velthuis, M. Boerjan, J. van Rielt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

73 Citations (Scopus)


In the Dutch poultry meat production chain, first week mortality (FWM) of the chicks is an important measure to quality and is therefore highly related to the price of the chicks that the broiler farm has to pay to the hatchery. Therefore, next to the total number of broiler eggs produced per hen and hatchability, this figure is often used as a measure of efficiency in the breeder-hatchery-broiler production chain. In this study, factors that are related to chick mortality in the first week at broiler farms were investigated. Field data obtained from 2 commercial Dutch hatcheries, for which 482 broiler farms voluntarily recorded FWM of 16,365 flocks of broiler chicks over the years 2004, 2005, and 2006, were analyzed. These represented 79% of the total number of day-old chicks delivered to separate broiler farms. First week mortality was significantly related to breeder age, egg storage length at the hatchery, season, strain, feed company of the breeder farm, year, and hatchery. Furthermore, FWM differed significantly between chicks originating from eggs of different breeder flocks and which were kept for grow-out at different broiler farms
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)798-804
JournalPoultry Science
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • day-old chick
  • live performance
  • egg storage
  • dietary-fat
  • breeder age
  • flock age
  • hatchability
  • incubation
  • nutrition
  • quality


Dive into the research topics of 'Field study on broilers' first-week mortality'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this