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Effects of feed intake and fasting duration upon body temperature and survival of thermostressed broilers



Effects of feed intake and fasting duration upon body temperature and survival of thermostressed broilers



Nutrition Reports International 35(3): 531-538



Three experiments were conducted to investigate the effect of feed consumption level and ambient temperature on broiler body temperature and ability to survive after acute heat stress. Unfed broilers housed at 35 C and higher (P < .05) body temperature (41.4 vs 41.3 C) than unfed broilers housed at 24 C. Force feeding birds at 6.5, 8.3, 9.6 and 11.1% of body weight in 3 meals per day increased (P < .05) body temperature. Feeding level did not alter body temperature though birds fed at 6.5% tended (P < .1) to have a lower body temperature. Lack of an interaction between feed intake and ambient temperature suggest that effects of ambient temperature and feed intake are additive. Fasting broilers prior to heat stress initiation progressively lowered body temperature and increased survival of broilers subjected to acute heat stress. Data reported indicate that feed restriction from 0 to 24 h prior to the onset of life threatening acute heat stress reduces mortality while feed restriction after the onset of acute heat stress has limited value.

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Accession: 001580771

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