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Revista Brasileira de Ciência Avícola

Print version ISSN 1516-635XOn-line version ISSN 1806-9061

Rev. Bras. Cienc. Avic. vol.2 no.3 Campinas Sept. 2000

http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-635X2000000300007 

Avaliação da Exigência de Cloro para Matrizes Pesadas 

Evaluation of the Chloride Requirement of the Broiler Breeder Hen

 

 


Autor(es) / Author(s)

Harl JC 
Harms RH 
Wilson HR 
Russel GB

 

Correspondência / Mail Address

R. H. Harms

Derpatment of Animal Sciences
University of Florida
PO Box: 1 10920 
Gainesville, Florida 3261 1-0920, USA

E-mail: Harms@animal.ull.edu 

 

Unitermos / Keywords

cloro, eclodibilidade, fertilidade, matrizes pesadas, peso de ovos, produção de ovos

broiler breeder, chloride, egg production, egg weight, hatchability

 

Observações / Notes

Florida Agricultural Experiment Station Journal Series Number R-07263

Appreciation is expressed to Arbor Acres for supplying the day old chicks used in these experiments. Financial support of Novus International, 530 Maryville Center Drive, St. Louis, MO is gratefully acknowledged.

RESUMO

Foram conduzidos dois experimentos para avaliar o requerimento de cloro para matrizes pesadas. O período experimental foi de doze semanas e foram testadas sete rações. As racões continham os seguintes níveis de cloro: 0,040, 0,047, 0,054, 0,060, 0,073, 0,099 e 1,74%. Foi utilizado o bicarbonato de sódio para se manter um nível constante de sódio. Os níveis de cloro abaixo de 0,054% reduziram a produção, o peso e o conteúdo dos ovos, o mesmo ocorrendo com o nível mais alto de cloro na ração. Os níveis de cloro não exerceram um efeito significativo sobre o peso corporal, fertilidade e eclodibilidade dos ovos. ONRC (1994) sugere um nível de 185mg de cloro por dia para matrizes pesadas. Nos experimentos 1 e 2, o requerimento encontrado foi de 96,1 mg/ave/dia e 101,1 mg/ave/dia para produção de ovos, 116,1 mg/ave/dia e 148,3 mg/ave/dia para peso máximo dos ovos e 95,9 mg/ave/dia e 109,5 mg/ave/dia para conteúdo do ovo, respectivamente.

 

ABSTRACT

Two experiments wore conducted to evaluate the chloride requirement of the broiler breeder hen. Experiments were conducted for a twelve-week period and seven experimental diets wore fed. The diets contained the following dietary chloride levels: 0. 040, 0. 047, 0. 054, 0.060, 0.073, 0.09g, and 0. 174%. Sodiam bicarbonate was used to maintain a constant level of sodium. Levels of dietary chloride below 0.054% reduced EF; EW, & EC (ED X (EW-shell wt). Also, the highest level of dietary chloride reduced all characteristics. Dietary chloride did not have a significant effect on body weight gain or fertility and hatchability of eggs. The Nationa/ Research Council (1994) suggests that the broller breeder hen have daily chloride intake of 185 milligrams per hen per day. In Experiments 1 and 2 the requirement was 96.1 mg/hen/day and 101. 1 mg/hen/day for EP, 116.1 mg/hen/day and 148.3 mg/hen/day for maximum EW, and 95.9 mg/hen/day and 109. 5 mg/hen/day for EC, respectively.


 

 

INTRODUCTION

Harms (1991) reported that if a hen does not receive sufficient chloride in the diet, egg production and egg weight decreases. Wilson (1991) reported that reduced egg weights and egg production result in smaller day-old chicks and a smaller number of chicks. Because of these effects, it is suggested that a similar situation may occur with broiler breeder hens exposed to a chloride deficiency.

Limited research has been conducted to determine the chloride requirement of the broiler breeder hen. Harms & Wilson (1984) conducted an experiment with broiler breeder hens by feeding five diets with varying levels of chloride furnished by sodium chloride. They found that a level of 0.09% supplemental chloride was necessary for maximum egg weight. They also found that egg production (EP) increased linearly by increasing supplemental chloride from zero to 0.135%. A further increase in supplemental chloride to 0.18% did not increase EP. However, the maximum EP achieved from a level of 208 mg/hen/day (0.135% Cl) did not differ significantly from the EP achieved when the National Research Council recommendation of 185 mg was fed. A level of 0.135% supplemental chloride was needed for maximum hatchability.

In a study with turkey breeder hens, Harms el al. (1983) found that egg weight (EW) increased as the supplemental chloride increased. Egg weight reached a maximum level at 0.135% supplemental chloride. Also, these researchers reported that supplemental chloride was not necessary for EP, fertility, or hatchability when feeding a corn-soybean diet.

Recommendations for dietary chloride have changed throughout the years. Although the National Research Council (1971) gave no requirement for either broiler breeder hens or commercial layers, they later recommended a requirement of 800 mg per kg of diet for the commercial layer and breeder hen (NRC, 1977). Their next recommendation was to provide a dietary chloride level of 0.15% for commercial layers; however, no requirements were given for broiler breeder hens (NRC, 1984). National Research Council recommended 0.13% dietary chloride, or 130 mg/hen/day if they consume 100 grams of feed, for commercial layers and 185 mg daily for broiler breeder hens.

More research has been conducted to study the requirement of chloride for the commercial laying hen. The National Research Council (1994) suggests that a level of 0.13% chloride, or 130 mg/hen/day, is needed in the diet of the Leghorn hen. Burns et al., (1952) with mature Leghorn pullets showed that little, if any, change occurred in EP for nine weeks when chloride was omitted from the hens diet. Harms (1991) found that a small percentage of commercial layers ceased production when supplemental chloride was removed from the corn-soybean diet and total egg production was significantly reduced. He also reported that EW was not significantly aflected when chloride was removed from the diet. However, Christmas & Harms (1982) reported that EP and EW were lowered when hens were fed a diet containing 0.08% chloride, as compared to 0.14% or 0.28% chloride.

The National Research Council (1994) suggests 185 mg per day as the chloride requirement of the meat-type breeding hen. However, NRC also emphasizes that this number is only an estimate because few experimental data exist to support their recommendation. These present experiments were conducted to evaluate the chloride requirement of the broiler breeder hen for EP, EW, egg content, weight gain and fertility and hatchability of eggs.

 

MATERIALS AND METHODS 

Experiment 1

This experiment was conducted with Arbor Acres Classic Broiler Breedera hens 30 weeks of age. A corn-soybean meal basal diet (Table 1) was used which contained 0.040% chloride by analysis. Drinking water by analysis contained 9 ppm Na and 28 ppm Cl. Seven experimental diets were fed for 12 weeks. These diets contained chloride levels of 0.040, 0.047, 0.054, 0.060, 0.073, 0.099, and 0.174%. Choline bicarbonate wes used instead of choline chloride, which is usually fed in poultry feeds.

 

 

This substitution made it possible to oUtain a lower chloride level than that used by Harms & Wilson (1984). All diets contained 0.11 % sodium supplied by varying levels of NaCI and sodium bicarbonate. Corn oil and builders sand were added to the basal diet to keep the diets isocaloric.

Eight replicates of eight hens per pen were fed each of the seven experimental diets. Prior to beginning the experiment the hens were palpated to verify that they were laying, and non-layers wore replaced. Hens were kept on wood shavings in flocr pens having 2.31 m2 Of floor space. Each pen had four nest boxes containing wood shavings as nesting material. Each pen had two individual automatic watering cups and one hanging cylindrical feeder. The hens were fed 154 g of diet at 0700 hr each day. Daily egg production records wore kept for each pen. Hens were allowed 16 hr of light daily (0500 to 2100 hr).

Egg production was summarized every seven days. The eggs produced on the last day of each week were group weighed. The eggs were broken out and shells thoroughly washed, dried, and weighed four days later. Body weight per pen was obtained on the first and last days of the experiment and weight change calculated. Egg production was calculated by dividing the number of eggs by the number of bird days per pen. Egg content was calculated by multiplying EP by EW minus shell weight. Data including EP, EW and EC were calculated for weeks one through six and seven through twelve. The period of weeks one through six was considered as a depletion period and weeks seven through twelve wore used to calculated requirements.

In the seventh week of the experiment hens from treatments containing 0.040, 0.054, 0.073, and 0.174% CI were inseminated using semen from Hy-Line W36 males. Hens were inseminated on two consecutive days and eggs were collected for the next seven days. From the diets with 0.040, 0.054, 0.073, and 0.174% CI, 142, 150, 170, and 174 eggs were set, respectively. Eggs were incubated for 21 days in a Natureform incubator/hatcher. The numbers of fertile and total eggs hatched per treatment were recorded. Percent fertility was calculated.

Experiment 2

The second experiment was conducted with Arbor Acres Classic Broiler Breedera* hens 45 weeks of age. A corn-soybean meal basal diet (Table 2) was used which contained 0.040% chloride by analysis. The hens had access to the same drinking water as in Experiment 1. The seven experimental diets contained the same chloride levels as used in Experiment 1. The hens were fed 150 g per hen daily in contrast to the 154 g fed daily in Experiment 1. The lowered daily feed allotment was to adjust for different egg output.

 

 

The general procedure was the same as in Experiment 1. In the fourth week hens from trealments containing 0.040, 0.060, 0.099, and 0.174% CI were inseminated using semen from HyLine W36 males. The hens were inseminated once and eggs from these hens were collected for day two through eight. From the diets with 0.040,0.060, 0.099, and 0.174%, 307, 331, 355, and 354, eggs were set, respectively. Eggs were incubated for 21 days in a Natureform incubator/hatcher. The numbers of fertile and total eggs hatched per treatment were recorded. Percent fertility was calculated.

Data for both experiments were analyzed utilizing the analysis of variance (SAS, 1990). Duncan's multiple range test was used to determine significant differences among treatments (1955). Broken-line regression was used to establish the CI requirement for EW, EP, & EC (Noll & Waibel, 1989).

 

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION 

Experiment 1

Egg production decreased rapidly in most treatments during week four (Table 3) and continued to decline through week six. This reduction was apparently due to an outbreak of bronchitis. Although the virus was not isolated, the eggshells bleached from dark brown to light ran and some became as white as a White Leghorn egg. However, there were no significant differences among treatments overall for the first six weeks period and this was considered as a depletion period. Therefore, the period of weeks seven through twelve was selected to measure the influence of CI level on EP. During week seven EP was significantly reduced with hens fed the diet with 0.040% CI compared to hens fed the diet wilh 0.099% CI. The hens receiving the diet with 0.073% CI had an unexplained reduction in EP during week four and this continued for the remainder of the experiment. There was another large unexplained decrease in EP in all treatments during week eight. Egg production was regressed on chloride intake

[y = 71.47 ± 0.3445 (x-96.1); R2 = 0.1658] 

and the requirement for EP was found to be 96.1 ± 25.6 mg/hen/day (Figure 1). In general EP increased with increased CI levels of the diets during weeks seven through twelve. However, the EP of hens fed the diet with 0.073% Cl did not follow this pattern. We have no explanation for the performance of this group of hens. Also, hens that received the diet with 0.174% CI did not perform as well as the group receiving the diet with 0.099% CI, although the difference was not significant.

 

 

 

 

Egg weights declined before EP was reduced, especially with diets containing 0.040% and 0.047% CI (Table 3). Egg weights gradually decreased weeks seven through nine and reduced sharply in week ten. Then EW increased through week twelve. However, the diet wilh 0.040% CI did not follow this pattern. Egg weights from this treatment continued to decline steadily during weeks nine through twelve. Egg weights were regressed on chloride intake

[y = 56.28 ± 0.0433 (x - 116.1); R2 = 0.1837] 

and the requirement for EW was found to be 116.1 ± 36.9 mg/hen/day (Figure 2). Egg weights increased as the dietary CI level increased during weeks five through twelve.

 

 

There was no significant difference among the treatments for average EC in the first six-week period (Table 3). Egg content reduced drastically in week three and continued to decline through week seven. This reduction was a result of the decreased EP. A second large reduction in EC occurred in week eight and then decreased until week ten. During weeks eleven and twelve EC increased almost as much as it had decreased in week three. This was also due to the increase in EP. Egg content was regressed on chloride intake

[y = 35.70 ± 0.1677 (x - 95.9); R2= 0.1312] 

and the requirement for EC was found to be 95.9 ± 26.2 mg/hen/day (Figure 3).

 

 

All hens gained weight during the experimental period. This gain was expected based on the energy level fed. However, hens fed diets with 0.040 and 0.047% CI gained significantly less than hens in other treatments. There was considerable variability (SEM = 47) among the hens in all treatments.

The level of dietary chloride did not significantly affect fertility, hatch of fertile eggs, or total hatchability (Table 4). Fertility was unusually low in this experiment even though the males used were known to give high fertility in White Leghorn hens. Hatchability of fertile eggs was unaffected by CI treatment and was at a normal level for the strain.

 

 

Experiment 2

There was less variability for EP in this experiment than in Experiment 1. A CI deficiency became apparent in week three of the experiment (Table 5). Egg production was significantly lowered when the hens were fed the diet with 0.040% CI. This result differed from that of the first experiment where the hens became deficient at seven weeks. Beginning in week two the hens receiving the diet with 0.073% CI had the highest EP and it remained high for the reminder of the experiment. Hens receiving the diet with 0.040% CI continued to have the lowest average EP for the period of weeks seven through twelve. Egg production for hens fed the diets wilh 0.047% and 0.054% CI were lower than the four highest treatments. Egg production was regressed on chloride intake

[y = 66.93 ± 0.1310 (x - 101.1); R2= 0.1143] 

and the requirement for EP was found to be 101.1 ±  42.8 mg/hen/day (Figure 4). This requirement agrees well with the requirement found in Experiment 1 and is considerably lower than the recommendation of NRC (1994) 185 mg/hen/day.

 

 

 

 

There was a trend for an increase in EW throughout the twelve-week period. Differences among treatments were not as great as in Experiment 1. However, EW from hens fed the diets with 0.040% CI was significantly lower than 0.099% CI indicating, as in Experiment 1, that hens receiving low CI levels will reduce EW. Egg weights were not reduced in Experiment 2 and in Experiment 1. However, EW was regressed on chloride intake

[y = 62.33 ± 0.0137 (x - 148.3); R2= 0 0593] 

and the requirement for EW was found to be 148.0 ± 18.3 mg/hen/day (Figure 5). This is a much higher requirement than found in Experiment 1. Also the response slope of the line was greatly different from Experiment 1.

 

 

Egg content did not decline as the experiment progressed. There were no large drops in performance in this experiment. Instead, EC increased during weeks seven through twelve. The EC during the second six-week period was higher than the EC during the first six-week period (Table 4). This was a result of higher EW and EP. Hens receiving the diet of 0.040% CI had the lowest EC. Egg content mass was regressed on chloride intake

[y= 38.00 ± 0.0752 (x – 109.5); R2= 0.1532]

and the requirement for EC was found to be 109.5 ± 55.0 mg/hen/day (Figure 6). This agreos well with the requirement found in Experiment 1.

 

 

In Experiment 2 the hens continued to gain weight. However, the body weight gain was not as high as in Experiment 1 (data not shown). This was a result of the cooler weather and a slightly lower daily energy allowance. Body weight gain of hens consuming the diet with 0.047% CI was significantly less than the hens consuming the diet with 0.060% CI; however, the SEM was 38.

Fertility, and thus hatchability of eggs set, was extremely low in all treatments, (Tables 4 and 6). Hatch of fertile eggs was normal. This was possibly due to inseminating old hens with semen from old males and only one insemination. The level of dietary chloride did not influence fertility, hatchability of fertile eggs or total hatchability.

 

 

NOTE

a, a* - Arbor Acres, Glastonbury, CT 06033.

 

REFERENCES

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Christmas RB, Harms RH. Performance of laying hens when fed various levels of sodium and chloride. Poultry Science 1982; 61(5):947-950.        [ Links ]

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Noll SL, Waibel PE. Lysine requirement of the growing turkey in various temperature environments. Poultry Science 1989; 68(6):781794.        [ Links ]

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