The Effect of Low-Density Broiler Breeder Diets on Performance and Immune Status of their Offspring

H. Enting, W.J.A. Boersma, J.B.W.J. Cornelissen, S.C.L. van Winden, M.W.A. Verstegen, P.J. van de Aar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Effects of low-density broiler breeder diets on offspring performance and mortality were studied using 2,100 female and 210 male Cobb 500 breeders. Breeder treatments involved 4 experimental groups and a control group with normal density diets (ND, 2,600 kcal of AME/kg during rearing and 2,800 kcal of AME/kg during laying). In treatment 2, nutrient densities were decreased by 12% (LD12) and 11% (LD11) during the rearing and laying periods, respectively, whereas in treatment 3, nutrient densities were decreased by 23% (LD23) and 21% (LD21) during the rearing and laying periods, respectively. The nutrient density in these treatments was decreased through inclusion of palm kernel meal, wheat bran, wheat gluten feed, and sunflower seed meal in the diets. Treatment 4 included diets with the same nutrient densities as in treatment 2 but included oats and sugar beet pulp (LD12OP and LD11OP). In treatment 5, the same low-density diet was given to the breeders as in treatment 2 during the rearing period, but it was followed by a normal density diet during the laying period (LD12-ND). Treatments were applied from 4 to 60 wk of age. On low-density diets, offspring showed an increased 1-d-old weight. As compared with offspring of breeders that received ND, the d 38 live weight of chickens from 29-wk-old breeders fed LD11 was improved. Mortality was reduced in offspring from 60-wk-old parent stock given low-density diets. The IgM titers in 35-d-old offspring from eggs with a lower-than-average weight were reduced when 29-wk-old broiler breeders were fed low-density diets. In offspring from eggs with a higher-than-average weight from 60-wk-old parent stock given LD11 or LD21 diets, IgM titers were higher compared with ND. It was concluded that low-density broiler breeder diets can improve offspring growth rates, reduce mortality, and reduce or increase immune responses, depending on breeder age and egg weight.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-290
JournalPoultry Science
Volume86
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2007

Keywords

  • low-protein diets
  • egg weight
  • feed conversion
  • age
  • growth
  • stress
  • fat
  • parameters
  • mortality
  • chickens

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