Effect of cooled perches on physiological parameters of caged White Leghorn hens exposed to cyclic heat

J. Y. Hu, P. Y. Hester, M. M. Makagon, Y. Xiong, R. S. Gates, H. W. Cheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We assessed the effects of water-chilled perches as a cooling device on the physiological parameters of caged laying hens exposed to 2 cyclic heating episodes. White Leghorns, 17 wk of age, were randomly assigned to 36 cages of 6 banks placed in the same room. Each bank was randomly assigned to 1 of 3 treatments: cooled perch (CP), air perch (AP), and no perch (CTRL) resulting in 2 replicate banks and 12 cages per treatment. Chilled water (10°C) circulated through the CP during heat periods when hens were 21 wk to 35 wk and 73 wk to 80 wk of age, respectively. During the heating episodes, hens were submitted to a daily cyclic temperature regimen of 35°C (0600 h to 1800 h) and 28°C (1800 h to 0600 h). Rectal temperature, packed cell volume, heterophil to lymphocyte (H/L) ratio, and plasma levels of triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4), interleukin (IL)-6, IL-10, immunoglobulin (Ig) Y, interferon (IFN)-γ, and heat shock protein (HSP) 70 were measured on the last day of the 2 heating episodes. At the end of the first heating episode, CP hens had lower rectal temperature (P = 0.02) than both AP and CTRL hens. The CP hens also had lower HSP 70 (P = 0.04) than CTRL hens but not AP hens. At the end of the second heating episode, the CP hens had lower rectal temperature (P = 0.02) and circulating H/L ratio (P = 0.01) than both AP and CTRL hens. The CP hens also had higher levels of T3 (P = 0.002) and T3/T4 ratio (P = 0.0006) than CTRL hens but not AP hens, with a greater packed cell volume than AP hens (P = 0.02) but not CTRL hens. Cytokines and IgY levels were similar among treatments. These results indicate that CP hens were better able to cope with cyclic heat stress than CTRL and sometimes AP hens as noted by the beneficial effects on rectal temperature, thyroid activity, HSP, and H/L ratio.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2317-2325
Number of pages9
JournalPoultry science
Volume98
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019

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Keywords

  • cooled perch
  • heat stress
  • laying hen
  • physiology
  • thyroid activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

Hu, J. Y., Hester, P. Y., Makagon, M. M., Xiong, Y., Gates, R. S., & Cheng, H. W. (2019). Effect of cooled perches on physiological parameters of caged White Leghorn hens exposed to cyclic heat. Poultry science, 98(6), 2317-2325. https://doi.org/10.3382/ps/pez012