Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

Do broilers prefer to eat from a certain type of feeder?

Neves, DPNääs, IAdo A Vercellino, Rde Moura, DJ

This study compared three types of feeders for broilers: Fênix, Tube and Automatic feeders. Bird's feeding behavior and preference were considered in this the evaluation. Preference was assessed by examining birds' behavioral activities, such as eating, standing and lying around the equipments, and meal duration as function of the environmental variables. Data on the behavioral activities and meal size were collected in a broiler commercial farm using a portable video camera, and the direct footages were analyzed. The time spent in each activity, feeding bout duration and time spent near the trough were statistically analyzed using the test of means and medians. Pearson's correlation test was used to evaluate the relationship between ambient environmental data and the time of feeding. A prospective scenario was established and data were pair wised compared to it. There were interactions between environmental characteristics and feeding and lying down activities during the experiment. Eating behavior was more frequent in the area around the Tube feeder. The duration of feeding time was higher when the birds used the Tube feeder (214 ± 28s), followed by the use of the Fênix feeder (123 ± 17s) and the Automatic feeder (77 ± 29s). Birds preferred eating from the Tube feeder probably due to the absence of the partition grid above the feeder plate.

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