Physical chick parameters and effects on growth performance in broiler
Abstract. This study was made to compare physical chick quality indicators such as chick length and feather colour and their effects on the uniformity and subsequent growth performance in broiler. For this reason; 600 day old male chicks were used. Chicks were classified into two groups on the basis of their feather colour: deep and light yellow. Then, chicks in each group were further divided into three groups as small, middle and large according to their body length. The length of the middle group animals was varied between 18.0–18.3 cm, while that of the largest group was greater than 18.3 cm and the small group was lesser than 18.0 cm. A positive correlation between chick length and chick weight was observed in all groups at the 0 day of age. Body length uniformity in day old chick was more important than body weight uniformity. Longer chicks exhibited better growth potential throughout the experiment. The feeding efficiency and survival rate of longer chicks were numerically greater compared to smaller chicks. There were no significant differences for subsequent growth parameters in feather colour groups. Consequently; length of day old chick can be used as important criteria for selection of higher quality chicks having better growth performance.