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Animals in modern day food production are exposed to many stressors throughout their lives. In the egg-industry, day old chicks are rountinely exposed to potentially stressful industry procedures such as rough handling, sorting, transports and vaccinations, that may have many short and long-term impacts. 

Disturbances experienced early on in life can have many physiological and behavioral impacts later on in life. Exposure to early stress can affect the development of the hypothalamic-pituitary-axis thus, affecting how one may cope with stress in adulthood. Postnatal stress has also been shown to affect growth rates, reproduction and cognition.  


The aim of this project was to investigate long-term behavioral effects in domestic chickens as a result from exposure to potential hatchery stress on their first day of life. More specifically, this project aimed to assess their stress reactivity and fearfulness in adulthood.

Responsible for this page: Agneta Johansson
Last updated: 06/15/16