HatchBrood: Towards an Antibiotic Free Poultry Industry
Conny Maatjens, MSc.
The first few days after hatch are crucial in the development of a chick. During this early brooding period, chicks need special care to optimize their further development. Although the chick is anatomically complete at hatch, the
thermoregulatory, digestive, and immune system are not completely developed yet. Maturation and development of these three main physiological systems are necessary to ensure optimal function of the natural immune system and optimal health during later life. Providing optimal and uniform brooding conditions is extremely important
to obtain and maintain the right body temperatures.
An optimal body temperature between 40.0 and 40.6˚C will ensure the chick is comfortable and will start to eat and drink.