Document Type : Original Article
Department of Veterinary Hygiene and Management, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Benha University, Egypt
The current study was conducted to investigate the impact of feed restriction on behavioral patterns, productive, and reproductive performance of Japanese Quail. Total number of 480 quail aged 6 weeks of both sexes were equally assigned to four groups (3 replicates per group). First Group (G1) was allowed to eat the whole day (control group). Second (G2), Third (G3), and Fourth Group (G4) were allowed to eat two times, three times, and four times per day respectively. All groups were subjected to 16 hours of light per day. Behavior of birds was observed 3 days per week. Body weight, productive performance (egg weight and quality), and reproductive performance (fertility and hatchability) were measured for all groups. Results were analyzed using mixed models in SPSS. Analysis showed that feeding twice a day significantly reduces the body weight (P<0.057), frequency of sexual behavior (P<0.05), percentage of fertility (P<0.0001), hatchability (P<0.001), percentage of unhatched fertile eggs (P<0.0001), and clear eggs (P<0.0001), compared to the control group. While feeding three and four times a day had a significantly higher effect on egg production (P<0.0001), egg weight (P<0.0001), fertility (P<0.0001), and hatchability (P<0.001) than feeding twice a day. Results showed that feed restriction could be used to protect the health and welfare of Japanese quail.