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Acclimation of broiler chickens to chronic high environmental temperature
  • Katholieke Univ Leuven
  • Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP)
The present study was conducted to evaluate the zootechnical parameters and age related changes in physiological responses of broiler chickens exposed to hot environment from early age onwards. The broiler chickens were exposed to high temperature (30 degreesC) at 15 d of age and maintained to Day 38 or maintained under thermoneutral environment (control).No significant decrease in feed consumption (FC) and body weight (BW) gain was observed in high temperature group after 7 d of exposure, but in the subsequent period, heat exposure lowered BW and FC, compared to control group. However, the weight gain was not significantly changed after 24 d of exposure, and the feed efficiency was not affected throughout the experimental period.The venous pCO(2) pressure was only significantly decreased by temperature after 24 d of heat exposure. The glucose, non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA), triglyceride (TG), glucose, lipid peroxidation (LPO), creatine kinase (CK), and corticosterone were not influenced by the temperature treatment. The significant decrease in uric acid and increase in lactate concentration due to high temperature were observed respectively at 28 and 35 d of age. The concentrations of triiodothyronine (T-3) and thyroxine (T-4) were changed oppositely at 28 d of age, as T-3 was decreased and T-4 was elevated by high temperature. However, the concentration of T-4 in plasma was decreased whereas T-3 was not changed at 38 d of age. The relationships between the blood parameters were changed due to the temperature treatment, suggesting that not only absolute values but also their interrelationships have to be considered when studying the effects of a particular treatment on physiological functioning.These results suggest the growth and physiological responses of broiler chickens, exposed to high temperature from early age onwards, differed at different stages of acclimation. The process of heat acclimation is related to the mode of heat exposure imposed and is not only reflected in the changes in the absolute concentrations, but also in the correlations among the blood indices.
Issue Date: 
Archiv Fur Geflugelkunde. Stuttgart: Eugen Ulmer Gmbh Co, v. 68, n. 1, p. 39-46, 2004.
Time Duration: 
Eugen Ulmer Gmbh Co
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Appears in Collections:Artigos, TCCs, Teses e Dissertações da Unesp

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