Maternal consumption of Original XPC improves progeny performance
Recent data suggest other maternal mechanisms might be activated which subsequently influence progeny performance when hens are fed Original XPC. Berry et al., (2012) showed that feeding Original XPC to broiler breeder hens improved carcass and breast meat weight in their progeny. To further investigate the possibility of maternal carry-over of Original XPC, a study was designed and conducted using Cobb 500 broiler breeder hens at Mississippi State University.
This trial was designed to observe progeny performance based upon maternal influence. Therefore the protocol was organized to produce eggs from replicated hen pens within each treatment. With 8 replicate pens per feed type (Control vs. Original XPC), only 3 breeder hens were required per pen to produce the eggs needed for progeny evaluation. Therefore, egg production per pen was not reported Since the test design was not intended for this comparison.
Feeding Original XPC to broiler breeder hens in this study significantly increased (P< 0.05) hatch of fertile eggs compared to control hens (Figure 1). No differences were observed between treatments for embryonic mortality (data not shown), but Original XPC hens at 32 weeks produced eggs with significantly less contamination (P < 0.05) compared to the controls (0.00% vs. 1.97%, respectively).
All broilers were grown in the same barn, with the same feed and were segregated only by the designation of their maternal treatment/pen in two separate progeny evaluation studies (eggs from 32 wk and 39 wk of dam age). Body weight gain was similar for both treatments in each progeny trial. Livability was not statistically different (P > 0.05) between treatments. Feed conversion was lowest in broilers from Original XPC hens and was highly significant (P < 0.01) during Trial 2.
Breast meat yield (fillet + tender) was improved in progeny from Original XPC fed hens and was highly significant (P < .001) during Trial 2. Berry et al (2012) also reported a maternal b east meat yield response in progeny from Cobb broiler breeders fed Original XPC. Observations of improved production performance in the progeny of Original XPC fed hens would imply that maternal factors are passed to the offspring that could influence bird physiology to produce improved nutrient utilization, as demonstrated by feed efficiency and muscle deposition.
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Article made possible through the contribution of Don McIntyre and Diamond V.