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Frequency of headshaking in White Leghorn chickens in response to hormonal and environmental changes

By E. A. Dunnington, P. B. Siegel

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Frequency of headshaking in chickens from two selected lines (HA and LA) known to differ in this trait was observed at various ages, during hormonal fluctuations and in different environmental surroundings. Neither hormonal changes concomitant with the initial onset of lay nor ingestion of corticosterone (which stopped egg production in 240-day-old pullets) altered headshaking frequency. When pullets reared in flocks on litter were moved at 77 days of age to individual battery cages, headshaking frequency was greatly increased in one flock but did not change in another flock. Moving 252-day-old birds from individual cages to floor pens decreased headshaking frequency in males but not in females; returning the birds to cages did not significantly alter levels of headshaking. In older birds (252 days of age), headshaking frequency in all birds in line HA and in males of line LA was considerably greater than in LA females.

Date 1986
Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 15
Issue 3
Pages 267-275
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
Language English
Author Address Poultry Dep. Polytech Inst. State Univ., Blacksburg, VA 24061, USA.
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Abnormal behavior
  2. Animal behavior
  3. Animal science
  4. Birds
  5. Breeds
  6. Cages
  7. Chickens
  8. Deviant behavior
  9. Fowls
  10. Glucocorticoids
  11. Head shaking
  12. Physical environment
  13. Poultry