Acta Scientiarum. Animal Sciences
On-line version ISSN 1807-8672
MOREIRA, Rafaele Ferreira et al. Effect of feed restriction with voluntary hay intake on the performance and quality of laying hen eggs. Acta Sci., Anim. Sci. [online]. 2012, vol.34, n.2, pp. 149-154. ISSN 1807-8672. http://dx.doi.org/10.4025/actascianimsci.v34i2.12451.
The objective was to evaluate the effect of a quantitative feed restriction on the voluntary intake of hay, the performance of laying hens, and on egg quality. A total of 150 Hisex Brown laying hens at 51-weeks old were distributed into five treatments and five replications of six hens each. The treatments consisted of control, with supply of 100 g of feed bird-1 day-1 without hay; and the others consisting of a feed restriction of 5, 10, 15 and 20% of the diet offered to the birds in the control treatment, along with an ad libitum supply of cunhã hay (CH), leucaena leaf meal (LLM) and tifton hay (TH). A linear increase was found in the hay intake with increasing level of dietary restriction. However, egg production, egg weight, egg mass and feed conversion decreased linearly. Yolk color was affected by the treatments. Birds with 20% feed restriction presented the greatest yolk pigmentation. In conclusion, laying hens can be subjected to a 5% feed restriction with supply of hay ad libitum.
Keywords : dietary restriction; hay intake; commercial laying hens; fodder.