The Importance of the Brooding Period
Presented on the XXIV World’s Poultry Congress, August 2012, by Dr. Roos Molenaar.
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Several developmental and physiological processes occur during the important and sensitive brooding period of chickens, which is the first 7 days of a chicken’s life. The chicken seems anatomically complete at hatch, but the thermoregulatory, gastro-intestinal and immune system need further development and maturation. Optimal brooding is essential to optimize animal health and contributes to a good performance and survival in later life.