Reaction to frustration in high and low feather pecking laying hens

T.B. Rodenburg, P.H. Zimmerman, P. Koene

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Reaction to frustration of high (HFP) and low feather pecking (LFP) laying hens was investigated. From a HFP- and a LFP-line five birds with a HFP- and five birds with a LFP-phenotype were selected. Birds from the HFP-line were expected to show more key pecking and covered feeder pecking during frustration than birds from the LFP-line. When a bunch of feathers was presented, birds with a HFP-phenotype were expected to redirect their pecks at the bunch. Birds were trained to peck a key for a food reward in an automated Skinnerbox and subjected to two sessions: a control session, where food was available, and a frustration session, where the feeder was covered with Perspex. These two sessions were repeated in the presence of a bunch of feathers. Unexpectedly, birds from the LFP-line had a stronger reaction to frustration than birds from the HFP-line, expressed in pecking behaviour. When a bunch of feathers was offered, birds with a HFP-phenotype did not show more bunch pecking during frustration than birds with a LFP-phenotype.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-129
JournalBehavioural Processes
Volume59
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2002

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