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By John Edward Eckert; Frank Robert Shaw; Everett Franklin Phillips

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For a reliable evaluation of the nutritional aspects, daily observation of individual roughage intake and body weight change are advisable. However, dynamic feeding towards an economic optimum indicates that excessive weight change can be prevented. Milk production (kg/day) 30 28 26 24 22 20 0 1 2 3 4 5 Concentrate intake (kg/day) Figure 3. Response curve for the median cow ( ___ ) and requirement curve (- - -). Figure 3 Response curve for the median cow (___) and requirement curve (- - -). G. B.

2001). , 2002). The occurrence of lameness is thought to be strongly correlated with weight and growth speed (Vestergaard and Sanotra, 1999). Other factors that have an influence on lameness are infectious diseases, genetics, sex, age, feed conversion, feeding, management and movement. Moreover, locomotion problems may be painful to the animal as well as decrease their mobility and increase secondary problems, such as hock burns, chest dirtiness, etc. Therefore in this study relation between parameters, whether they are causal or consequence with gait score are examined and gait score as a measure for lameness is thoroughly investigated in relation to the following physiological variables: weight, sex, hock burns, chest dirtiness, foot pad dermatitis and femoral head necrosis.

Measurements In the first round 50, second round 50 and the third round 52 individual broiler chickens were chosen at day 39 in such a way that there were enough samples from each gait score. Birds were taken from a compartment of 1,500 for each of the 3 experiments. In total 152 birds were measured and analyzed. • Gait Score: each bird was scored visually in the stable by a trained expert for its locomotion. Scores were estimated using the gait scoring system of Kestin et al. (1992). 3 g) and their sexes were determined visually by looking at the comb.

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