Incidence of pecking damage in growing bantams in relation to food form, group size, stocking density, dietary tryptophan concentration and dietary protein source

C. J. Savory*, J. S. Mann, M. G. Macleod

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

1. This paper reports 4 experiments with groups of 10 to 20 growing bantams in multi-unit brooders, which investigated effects of certain environmental and dietary factors on development of feather pecking damage to 6 weeks of age. Damage was assessed according to a subjective scoring system. 2. A test of food form (pellets, mash, mash diluted with 100 g/kg powdered cellulose) confirmed that pecking damage tends to be greater with pellets than with mash but there was no significant difference between the low damage scores associated with undiluted and diluted mash treatments. 3. A test of group size (10, 20 birds) and stocking density (744, 372, 186 cm2/bird) showed that variation in pecking damage was associated with group size x density interactions. 4. A test of dietary supplementation with L-tryptophan (0, 10, 20 g/kg) showed suppression of pecking damage with the higher (20 g/kg) dose, compared with the control (0 g/kg) treatment. 5. A test of dietary protein source (plant, mainly animal, mainly semipurified) showed no difference in pecking damage scores between treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)579-584
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Poultry Science
Volume40
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPrint publication - 1 Jan 1999

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