Document Type

Conference Proceeding


2003 ASAE Annual International Meeting

Publication Date



Las Vegas, NV


This study quantifies feeding behavior of W-98 White Leghorn pullets (1-3 weeks old) as influenced by the management practice of beak trimming. The feeding behavior was characterized using a newly developed measurement system and computational algorithm. Beak trimmed (BT) pullets and non-trimmed (NT) pullets exhibited significantly different eating behavior over the ages of 8 to 21 days with regard to meal size and meal duration. Beak-trimmed birds tended to eat larger and longer meals, although the differences between the BT and NT birds were not constant with age (significant interaction between beak type and age, P<0.05). No significant differences across beak types or ages were detected for ingestion rate or interval between meals. The BT and NT pullets had similar amount of daily feeding time (1.1 - 1.2 hr/day). However, the number of meals per day differed, 28 meals/day for the BT pullets vs. 35 meals/day for the NT pullets. Baseline feeding behavior information of this nature may help better quantify and ensure welfare of the animals through exercising proper engineering design or management considerations.


This is an ASAE Meeting Presentation, Paper No. 034005.

Copyright Owner

American Society of Agricultural Engineers




Article Location