The objective of the present work was to evaluate the efects of the fasting periods (zero, 24 and 48 hours) between hatching and housing of broiler chicks and the addition of oil to the feed, on the alometric growth of the digestive organs and lipase concentration in the pancreas and small intestine. In the experiment, 720 male broiler chicks were raised from one to 15 days of housing. The evaluations of development of the digestive organs were done on days zero, three, six, nine, 12 and 15 of age. The evaluations of the lipase concentrations in the pancreas were done on days zero, three, six, nine, 12 and 15, and in the small intestine on days zero, three and six. A factorial 3 x 2 (three periods of fasting and two types of ration) experimental design was used. The alometric growth of the digestive organs was greater for the broilers not submitted to fasting, and the greatest rates of alometric growth were observed on the first days of life, showing a faster growth of the digestive organs at this stage. Although there was some lipase storage in the pancreas, in the small intestine the concentration was low and increased with age. The content of lipase in the intestine varied with the concentration of lipid in the diet.
Broiler chicks; gastrointestinal tract; lipase; fasting