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PERFORMANCE AND BEHAVIOUR OF CHICKENS WITH DIFFERENT GROWING RATE REARED ACCORDING TO THE ORGANIC SYSTEM

CASTELLINI, C; DAL BOSCO, A; MUGNAI, C and BERNARDINI, M (2003) PERFORMANCE AND BEHAVIOUR OF CHICKENS WITH DIFFERENT GROWING RATE REARED ACCORDING TO THE ORGANIC SYSTEM. Italian Journal of Animal Science (6), pp. 561-573.

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Summary

The performance and the behaviour of three different chicken strains, reared according to the EEC-Regulation 1804/1999 organic system, were compared. The strains had very slow (Robusta maculata), slow (Kabir) and fast (Ross) growing rates, respectively. The trial was carried out on 200 chickens (male and female) per strain. Rearing lasted 81 days as
required by the EEC Regulations. At slaughter age, 20 birds per group were killed. Robusta maculata and Kabir chickens showed more intense walking activity and better foraging aptitude; their antioxidant capacity was also superior. Ross chickens had a good growth rate and feed conversion index, reaching an excellent body weight, but the mortality and the culling rate were high indicating that fast-growing strains do not adapt well to organic production. Robusta maculata showed the worst productive performance although the mortality was low and Kabir birds gave intermediate results.
The carcass traits were the best in Ross and the poorest in Robusta maculata. Male chickens were heavier and leaner than females.


EPrint Type:Journal paper
Keywords:Chickens, Performance, Behaviour, Organic system
Subjects: Animal husbandry > Production systems > Poultry
Animal husbandry > Health and welfare
Research affiliation: Italy > Univ. Perugia
Deposited By: Castellini, Prof. C.
ID Code:9327
Deposited On:03 Oct 2006
Last Modified:12 Apr 2010 07:34
Document Language:English
Status:Published
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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