Identification of a practical and reliable method for the evaluation of litter moisture in turkey production

L.J. Vinco*, S. Giacomelli, L. Campana, M. Chiari, N. Vitale, G. Lombardi, T. Veldkamp, P.M. Hocking

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

1. An experiment was conducted to compare 5 different methods for the evaluation of litter moisture. 2. For litter collection and assessment, 55 farms were selected, one shed from each farm was inspected and 9 points were identified within each shed. 3. For each device, used for the evaluation of litter moisture, mean and standard deviation of wetness measures per collection point were assessed. 4. The reliability and overall consistency between the 5 instruments used to measure wetness were high (α = 0.72). 5. Measurement of three out of the 9 collection points were sufficient to provide a reliable assessment of litter moisture throughout the shed. 6. Based on the direct correlation between litter moisture and footpad lesions, litter moisture measurement can be used as a resource based on-farm animal welfare indicator. 7. Among the 5 methods analysed, visual scoring is the most simple and practical, and therefore the best candidate to be used on-farm for animal welfare assessment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-12
JournalBritish Poultry Science
Volume59
Issue number1
Early online date27 Oct 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

Keywords

  • Bedding quality
  • environment
  • foot pad dermatitis
  • litter moisture
  • poultry
  • welfare

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