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Animal Breeding and Genetics
Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 2002;15(1): 1-6.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.2002.1    Published online January 1, 2002.
Effects of Egg Size and Eggshell Conductance on Hatchability Traits of Meat and Layer Breeder Flocks
Tarek M. Shafey
Eggs obtained from 46 and 42 weeks old meat (Hybro) and layer (Leghorn) breeders flocks, respectively were used to examine the effects of genetic type of birds and egg size (small, medium and large) on variables of eggshell characteristics and hatchability traits. The variables measured were egg weight (EW), egg surface area (ESA) and eggshell characteristics (shell conductance (EC), per cent shell (PS), shell thickness (ST), shell volume (SV), shell density (SD) and hatchability traits (per cent hatchability (HP), early dead embryos (ED), late dead embryos (LD), pips with live embryos (PL) and pips with dead embryos (PD)). Genetic type of bird influenced all egg characteristics and HP of eggs. Eggs produced by the small Leghorn bird had lower EW, ESA, EC, ST, SV and HP than those produced by the heavy Hybro bird. The reduction of HP was associated with an increase in the percentage of ED and PL. Egg size influenced all variables measured except ST. Small size eggs had lower EW, ESA and EC and higher PS and SD than those of large eggs. Medium size eggs produced a higher HP when compared with that of large size eggs. The reduction of HP in large eggs was associated with higher percentage of ED, LD and PL. There were significant interactions between the genetic group of birds and egg size on LD and HP. Large egg size of Hybro birds had higher LD and lower HP than those of small size eggs produced by the same flock. However, There was no difference in HP and LD among the different egg sizes produced by Leghorn birds. It was concluded that genetic make up of birds and egg size influence eggshell characteristics and HP. The type of bird (heavy or small) influences the optimum egg size for successful hatching. Attention should be given to the size and eggshell characteristics of eggs of breeders'''' flocks for achieving maximum HP.
Keywords: Eggshell; Egg Size; Per Cent Hatchability; Breeder Flocks

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