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10 Feeding Strategies For The Management Of Heat Stress In Poultries

  • Diet Density

As feed consumption decreases, applying a more intense diet can help maintain nutrient intake. Higher energy supply may be required due to low feed intake. Increasing the energy and amino acid content of diets improves performance.

  • Amino Acids and Crude Proteins

Heat stress significantly affects the amino acid requirements of poultry animals. Increasing digestible amino acid levels in the feed of broilers raised at high temperatures increases performance. Providing a well-balanced source of amino acids, helps minimize energy loss and helps animals cope with heat stress.

  • Fats

Providing more energy with high quality fats, can be a method to reduce heat generated by the poultry animals and improve performance. Fat levels can be increased by 2-3% to replace some of the energy from starch. Fats should have good quality and be stabilized sufficiently.

  • Digestibility

It aims to improve the digestibility of feed, reduce the energy required for metabolism and increase the temperature of digestion, thereby increasing further growth and productivity. Using high quality raw materials and feed additives such as enzymes and phytogenics may be the methods to increase feed digestibility.

  • Feed Type

Feeds in pellet form, reduce energy consumption for food. The physical structure of pellets allows animals to consume feed with less energy and helps to improve performance. Pellets should have suitable quality for optimum benefit.

  • Feed And Water Management

In high temperature conditions, feeders and irrigation area should be determined appropriately. Therefore; the correct number of areas should be allocated, and the animal density should be reduced if necessary. Interrupting feeding during periods of high temperature and providing feed during times of relatively low ambient temperatures can help reduce heat-related stress and improve performance.

  • Feed Additives

Certain feed additives such as betaine, enzymes, antioxidants, mycotoxin binders, phytogenics and probiotics should be used to minimize the negative effects of heat stress. The use of coccidiostats such as nicarbazin and monensin, which may cause further stress or affect water intake during periods of high temperature, should also be avoided.

  • Vitamins

The daily requirements and availability of vitamins for animals can be affected by high temperatures due to reduced feed intake and stress response. Chicks raised in high ambient temperatures need an increased thiamine requirement. Heat stress also affects the adrenal glands, increasing cortisol levels and vitamin C demand. It may be beneficial to supplement ascorbic acid at these times through feed or water. Vitamins A and E are effective in increasing the antioxidant status and immune function.

  • Cation- Anion Balance

The blood pH and acid-base balance of animals may be affected from heat stress due to rapid breathing and excessive loss of carbon dioxide. Adding sodium bicarbonate to the diet can improve performance under heat stress. Along with bicarbonate, electrolytes such as sodium and potassium are excreted in the urine. Adding electrolytes can be beneficial for maintaining osmotic balance.

  • Minerals

Minerals can be given to animals at higher amounts under heat stress. It was observed that the adhesion rates of manganese, copper and zinc were lower in chicks raised in high ambient temperatures. Therefore, mineral supplementation can reduce the consequences of heat stress and benefit animal performance.


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