Plasma corticosterone was measured as a stress indicator of laying hens in different management conditions. Laying hens housed in cages and floor pens were sampled repeatedly in the morning and the afternoon. Plasma corticosterone concentrations of afternoon samples of hens from floor treatments were significantly higher than those from cage treatments, but morning values were not different. These results suggest that management systems, producing subtle adverse conditions for laying hens, are associated with elevated baseline corticosterone levels during the nadir of the diurnal response, whereas peak values may not be affected.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology