Articles | Volume 59, issue 1
Arch. Anim. Breed., 59, 131–137, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/aab-59-131-2016
Arch. Anim. Breed., 59, 131–137, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/aab-59-131-2016

Original study 08 Mar 2016

Original study | 08 Mar 2016

Effect of straw size and microbial amendment of litter on certain litter quality parameters, ammonia emission, and footpad dermatitis in broilers

Mirjana Đukić Stojčić, Siniša Bjedov, Dragan Žikić, Lidija Perić, and Niko Milošević Mirjana Đukić Stojčić et al.
  • University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Animal Science, 21000 Novi Sad, Serbia

Abstract. This study was conducted to evaluate the impact of litter amendment (microbiological product – Micropan complex) and straw size (unchopped and chopped straw) on pH, moisture level, ammonia emission, and footpad dermatitis in broilers. A total of 1200 1-day-old Ross 308 broilers were randomly allocated to four treatments (2  ×  2 factorial arrangement), with four replicates per treatment. Each replicate consisted of 75 as-hatched birds per pen. The first factor consisted of wheat straw – chopped (C) or unchopped (U) – and the second factor was the litter amendment with (WM) or without (OM) Micropan® (enzymatic bacterial product – Eurovix, USA). At 4, 5, and 6 weeks of the trial, the levels of ammonia concentration, moisture content, and pH of litter in each pen were measured. The foot pad lesions were evaluated at 21, 35, and 42 days of age. Broilers reared on chopped straw had significantly better leg condition as expressed by a smaller incidence and severity of footpad dermatitis. The pH value of litter was decreased and footpad quality was significantly improved by Micropan application in broilers kept on chopped and unchopped straw in the sixth week of age. There was no significant effect of Micropan application and straw size on ammonia emission in broiler housing.

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Short summary
This study was conducted to evaluate the impact of the litter amendment (Micropan complex), the straw size, pH, and moisture levels on ammonia emission from litter and on footpad dermatitis in broilers. Broilers reared on chopped straw had significantly better leg condition as expressed by a smaller incidence and occurrence of FPD. The pH value of litter was decreased and footpad quality was significantly improved by Micropan application in broilers kept on straw.