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Animal Reproduction and Physiology
Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 1996;9(6): 727-746.
https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.1996.727    Published online December 1, 1996.
Effects of dietary protein level, restricted feeding, strain and age on eggshell quality in laying hens
C. W. Kang, K. T. Nam, O. E. Olson, C. W. Carlson
The effects of four factors-two dietary protein levels(12 and 16%), feeding methods(ad libitum and restricted), strains(A and B), and age of hens-on egg quality and laying performance were examined. Use of the 12% dietary protein level resulted in significantly lower(p<0.05) hen-day egg production, higher feed intake to about 85% of the ad libitum intake decreased mean hen-day production. Significant feeding method-by-age interactions(F 횞 A) were obtained for all parameters. Restricted feeding had favorable effects on shell strength and Haugh unit values after 28 and 16 weeks of egg production, respectively. There was significant difference in shell strength between the two strain. Examination of the three-factor interaction among protein levels, feeding method and strain(P 횞 F 횞 S) disclosed that the favorable effect of the A strain on shell strength was significant only with the 16% protein-restricted fed group. The other treatment group did show a trend for greater shell strength of the A strain. Mean values for all the parameters examined changed significantly(p<0.01) with the age of hens. Feed intake per dozen eggs tended to increase, with some fluctuation, as the hens aged. There was a linear decrease in Haugh unit scores and shell strength. The effect of restricted feeding on either shell strength or Haugh unit scores were favorable for the aged chickens.
Keywords: Eggshell Quality; Protein; Feeding; Strains; Age

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