Poultry International - November 2019 - 30

30 ❙ PoultryInternational

How managing layer weight
and nutrition impacts egg size
Achieving desired egg size can be most easily
achieved through management of layer weight
and nutrition.

Andrea Gantz

CARLOS DE LA CRUZ

E

gg size is closely linked with
hen age - the older the hen
the bigger the egg, but there
are numerous other influencing
factors. Every management aspect
in egg production can impact the
size of an egg, with body weight
and nutrition having the greatest
influence.

Body weight
Some birds have a genetic predisposition to grow more than others,
linked to feed intake, and this
eventually influences egg size.
Because of this, producers must
fully consider the breed that they
rear. Brown layers, for example,
are heavier than white hens, so
they will produce bigger eggs.
Body weight is an important
parameter of success during egg
production, especially during the
rearing period. It provides indicators of when to switch feeds

Every aspect of layer management can impact egg size, but body
weight and nutrition will have the greatest influence. Courtesy Evonik
according to physiological requirements and skeletal formation.
A layer's body weight can
also provide an indication of egg
size during the entire production period. An established rule
of thumb is that, for each 100
grams of reduction in body weight,
egg size will reduce by 0.8 to 1.0
gram.
Body weight at the onset of egg
production regulates egg weight
during the whole laying cycle, and
heavier hens lay heavier eggs.
Light stimulation is a key tool
to promote sexual maturity and egg
size. A slow step-down program
during the rearing period gives the

pullet more light hours to eat and
grow, delays maturity and leads
to a larger egg size. A faster stepdown lighting program provides
fewer light hours and slower
growth, but promotes earlier sexual
maturity and a smaller egg size.
To determine the onset of egg
production, both the age at which
light stimulation occurs and body
weight need to be considered
as they play an important role
in the maturity of the reproductive organs. As hens age, they
lay larger eggs, and egg size is
usually inversely proportional to
the number of eggs laid. The faster
the onset of production, the greater
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Poultry International - November 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Poultry International - November 2019

Poultry International - November 2019
Contents
Editor’s Comment
WATTAgNet.com
10 tips for proper broiler evisceration How to improve evisceration efficiency and reduce cross-contamination at the poultry processing plant.
US Hispanic market for chicken needs to be claimed
Spain’s largest cage-free egg producer urges animal welfare
ASF offers major opportunities for poultry, egg producers
Employee ventilation training key to layer farm success
Could avian flu-resistant chickens be a commercial reality?
What does science say about poultry sustainability?
How managing layer weight and nutrition impacts egg size
Key considerations to minimize processed poultry rejects
Marketplace
Advertisers’ Index
Poultry International - November 2019 - CT1
Poultry International - November 2019 - CT2
Poultry International - November 2019 - Poultry International - November 2019
Poultry International - November 2019 - Cover2
Poultry International - November 2019 - Contents
Poultry International - November 2019 - Editor’s Comment
Poultry International - November 2019 - 3
Poultry International - November 2019 - 4
Poultry International - November 2019 - WATTAgNet.com
Poultry International - November 2019 - 10 tips for proper broiler evisceration How to improve evisceration efficiency and reduce cross-contamination at the poultry processing plant.
Poultry International - November 2019 - 7
Poultry International - November 2019 - 8
Poultry International - November 2019 - 9
Poultry International - November 2019 - US Hispanic market for chicken needs to be claimed
Poultry International - November 2019 - 11
Poultry International - November 2019 - Spain’s largest cage-free egg producer urges animal welfare
Poultry International - November 2019 - 13
Poultry International - November 2019 - 14
Poultry International - November 2019 - 15
Poultry International - November 2019 - ASF offers major opportunities for poultry, egg producers
Poultry International - November 2019 - 17
Poultry International - November 2019 - 18
Poultry International - November 2019 - 19
Poultry International - November 2019 - Employee ventilation training key to layer farm success
Poultry International - November 2019 - 21
Poultry International - November 2019 - 22
Poultry International - November 2019 - 23
Poultry International - November 2019 - Could avian flu-resistant chickens be a commercial reality?
Poultry International - November 2019 - 25
Poultry International - November 2019 - 26
Poultry International - November 2019 - What does science say about poultry sustainability?
Poultry International - November 2019 - 28
Poultry International - November 2019 - 29
Poultry International - November 2019 - How managing layer weight and nutrition impacts egg size
Poultry International - November 2019 - 31
Poultry International - November 2019 - Key considerations to minimize processed poultry rejects
Poultry International - November 2019 - 33
Poultry International - November 2019 - 34
Poultry International - November 2019 - 35
Poultry International - November 2019 - Advertisers’ Index
Poultry International - November 2019 - Cover3
Poultry International - November 2019 - Cover4
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