Method of Bill Trimming can Affect the Behaviour, Performance, and Welfare of Mule Duck
Bill trimming and Mule duck behaviour and welfare
Keywords:Bill trimming, behaviour, performance, welfare, Mule ducks
In the poultry industry, debeaking is an efficient strategy to reduce feather pecking and cannibalism. For this study, researcher compared the behavioural, performance, and well-being effects of two debeaking consequences on Mule ducks. In this study, 15-day-old Mule ducks were separated into three groups named: control, scissor, and hot searing. The ducks were weighed every week. Scanning was used to evaluate ducks' behaviour, and feather condition was scored on a scale of 0 to 3. There were no significant variations in behavioural patterns like drinking and preening across the treatment groups (P>0.05). Feeding, sitting, sleeping, walking, pecking the environment and pecking other ducks were all significantly reduced in the hot searing group as compared to that of control and scissor groups. However, the group that was subjected to the hot searing experienced a significant increase in standing behaviour. Compared to the other groups, hot searing debeaking showed higher average daily, weekly, and ultimate weight gains (g). The type of debeaking had no effect on the ducks' average viability. By week four, control ducks had lower feather scores than the other two groups, and they continued to decline more quickly than the feathers of the trimmed ducks (P<0.05). Even though both techniques of trimming cause acute pain, it appears that using scissors is preferred as it leads to more weight gain in ducks and less beak-related behaviour in ducks, but it is still successful in reducing feather pecking damage.
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