Effects of light on responses to Low Atmospheric Pressure Stunning in broilers

Martin, J.E., Christensen, K., Vizzier-Thaxton, Y. and McKeegan, D.E.F. (2016) Effects of light on responses to Low Atmospheric Pressure Stunning in broilers. British Poultry Science, 57(5), pp. 585-600. (doi:10.1080/00071668.2016.1201200) (PMID:27352226)

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Abstract

1. Low atmospheric pressure stunning (LAPS) is a novel approach to poultry stunning invol-ving the application of gradual decompression lasting 280 s according to a prescribed pressure curve.2. The aim of this study was to determine how behavioural, electroencephalogram (EEG) and electro-cardiogram (ECG) responses to LAPS are influenced by illumination of the decompression chamber. Asecondary aim was to examine responses to the decompression chamber without LAPS being applied, assuch a“sham”control has been absent in previous studies.3. A two by two factorial design was employed, with LAPS/light, LAPS/dark, sham/light and sham/darktreatments (N= 20 per treatment). Broilers were exposed to each treatment in pairs, in each of which onebird was instrumented for recording EEG and ECG. Illumination was applied at 500 lx, and in shamtreatments, birds were identically handled but remained undisturbed in the LAPS chamber withoutdecompression for 280 s.4. Birds which underwent the sham treatment exhibited behaviours which were also observed in LAPS(e.g. sitting) while those exposed to LAPS exhibited hypoxia-related behaviours (e.g. ataxia, loss ofposture). Behavioural latencies and durations were increased in the sham treatments, since the wholecycle time was available (in LAPS; birds were motionless by 186 s).5. Within the sham treatments, illumination increased active behaviour and darkness induced sleep, butslow-wave EEG was seen in both. The pattern of EEG response to LAPS (steep reduction in medianfrequency in thefirst 60 s and increased total power) was similar, irrespective of illumination, thoughbirds in darkness had shorter latencies to loss of consciousness and isoelectric EEG. Cardiac responses toLAPS (pronounced bradycardia) closely matched those reported previously and were not affected byillumination.6. The effects of LAPS/sham treatment primarily reflected the presence/absence of hypoxia, whileillumination affected activity/sleep levels in sham-treated birds and slowed time to unconsciousness inbirds undergoing LAPS. Therefore, it is recommended that LAPS be conducted in darkness for poultry.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:McKeegan, Dr Dorothy
Authors: Martin, J.E., Christensen, K., Vizzier-Thaxton, Y., and McKeegan, D.E.F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:British Poultry Science
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0007-1668
ISSN (Online):1466-1799
Published Online:20 September 2016
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 British Poultry Science Ltd.
First Published:First published in British Poultry Science 57(5):585-600
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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