Send to

Choose Destination
Poult Sci. 2003 May;82(5):781-8.

Effects of delayed feed intake on body, intestine, and muscle development in neonate broilers.

Author information

Station de Recherches Avicoles, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, 37380 Nouzilly, France.


The short-term effects of delayed feeding (DF) for 2 d posthatching were measured in neonate chicks and compared to early feeding (EF). Chicks from 10 independent families were used in this study to determine whether genetic background control of growth may be influenced by EF and DF. Early feeding maintained significant interfamily body weight variations from hatch to 4 d of age, whereas there were no significant differences from 1 d of age when feeding was delayed to 48 h posthatching. These results suggest that posthatching feeding delay may distort genetic selection by masking the expression of genetic potential and disturbing the estimation of chick breeder value. In DF chicks, overall body growth was delayed until the beginning of feeding and body weight at 6 d of age was 25% lower than EF chicks. Availability of feed after the fasting period was not sufficient to compensate for the retardation of weight gain in either body weight or in intestine and breast muscle weight. However, initiation of intestine growth in DF chicks occurred from 1 d of age despite the lack of feeding, whereas feed intake was essential to enhance muscle growth. The potential for protein synthesis was lower in DF than in EF chicks during the first 2 d posthatching (P < 0.001) and then reached similar values after feed intake. These results confirm that initiation of growth in neonate chicks is improved by earlier feeding after hatching. Awareness of changes in overall body weight caused by posthatching food deprivation, especially in the intestine and muscle might help in the development of new diets which could minimize retardation of body weight gain in chicks.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center