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標題: A Survey Study of Hen's Nesting Behavior in the Floor Production System
作者: Ching-Hsia Li
關鍵字: 平飼生產系統;就巢行為;Floor production system;Nesting behavior
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平飼生產系統提供墊料地面及產蛋箱給母雞使用。對母雞而言,就巢活動為重要行為模式,母雞準備產蛋時會接近巢箱前平台開始探索尋找適合的巢箱,且檢查相鄰可替換的巢箱,一旦找到適合的巢箱就會進入巢箱,並且蹲坐於巢上準備產蛋。當母雞可以選擇已被佔有或沒被佔有的巢箱時,若選擇已被佔有的巢箱就是一種特別的巢箱使用模式─群聚就巢,群聚就巢會造成母雞對巢箱的競爭和巢箱資源的浪費。本研究之目的乃在調查平飼系統母雞之就巢行為。實驗使用280隻ISA Brown蛋雞,使用攝影機錄影並觀察30隻掛上肩牌的母雞51至63週齡之就巢行為。結果顯示,共417筆就巢行為之資料,97.20% 就巢行為都是在照明設備開啟5小時內開始表現,雞隻跳上巢箱前平台後平均費時7.56分鐘來探索才會進入巢箱,入巢箱內停留時間平均為50.19分鐘,就巢行為時間總長平均為57.75分鐘。群聚就巢發生頻率為21.13%。母雞對巢箱位置的選擇,下層巢箱(76.79%)高於上層(23.21%)。本研究結果顯示為避免干擾及中斷母雞就巢行為,建議人工光照開啟六小時後才餵飼雞隻;雞隻需費時約57.75分鐘來完成就巢行為;造成群聚就巢的原因為母雞偏好特定位置(下層)之巢箱,即使提供足夠數量的巢箱,仍會選擇共用巢箱。

The floor system provides litter on the ground and nest boxes for laying hens use. Use of nest boxes is an important part of the behavioural repertoire of laying hens. The first phase is a searching phase with the hen seeking possible nest sites. The hen examines closely the alternative sites. Once a suitable site has been chosen, the hen sits down on the nest in preparation of laying. A special form of nest box use is gregarious nesting, which occurs when a hen given the choice between an occupied and an unoccupied nest site chooses the occupied nest site. Gregarious nesting caused more competition with nests and waste of nest box resources. The research is to investigate the layer's nesting behavior in the floor production system. Two hundreds and eighty ISA Brown laying hens were tested in this study. Nesting behavior was continuously videotaped using cameras. Four hundred and seventeen nesting behavioural data were collected from the observed record of these 30 sampled hens. from 51 to 63 weeks of age. The results showed that hens(97.2%) started to perform nesting behavior within five hours after the light on. The hens averagely took 7.56 minutes to inspect the nest before entering a nest, and 50.19 minutes to stay in the nest. The hens' nesting behavior totally took 57.75 minutes averagely. There were 21.13% of gregarious nesting. For the choice of nest boxes location, the frequency of lower nests(76.79%) was higher than upper nests(23.21%). It is concluded that in order to avoid interference and disruption hens' nesting behavior, it is suggested to feed the chicken six hours after the artificial light turned on in the morning. The hens took about 57.75 minutes to complete the nesting behavior. The reason of gregarious nesting may be the preference of certain location (lower tier) of nests. Even if the number of nest boxes were enough, the hens still chose gregarious nesting.
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