A trial was carried out at the Animal Science Department of the Federal University of Viçosa to evaluate the performance of heavy and light layers. During four periods of twenty-eight days, 432 layers in the second production cycle, being 216 Hy Line W36 (light birds) and 216 Hy Line Brown (heavy birds), were used. A completely randomized experimental design with a 1+(4x2x2) factorial arrangement (one control treatment, four oil sources, two inclusion levels, and two genetic lines) with four replicates of six birds per experimental unit, was applied. The treatments consisted of diets containing 16.5% crude protein, formulated to supply the nutritional requirements, and the inclusion of each oil source at 2 or 4%. Soybean, canola, linseed and fish oils were used. The control diet did not contain any oil. The studied parameters were: feed intake (g/hen/day), egg production (%), egg weight (g), egg mass (g/hen/day), feed conversion ratio (kg feed /dozen of eggs and per kg eggs). Oil levels and sources did not influence egg mass, feed conversion ratio (per kg eggs and dozen eggs), or egg production. During the first three periods, independently of oil source or genetics, eggs from layers fed 4% oil were the heaviest, except for those of light birds fed soybean oil during the third period, which egg weight was similar for the 2 and 4% levels. Light layers presented lower feed intake and better feed conversion ratio (per kg eggs and dozen eggs) as compared to heavy layers, and there was no influence of the evaluated oil sources on feed intake.
Canola oil; fish oil; layers; linseed oil; performance; soybean oil