Egg quality is an important factor in poultry farming often indicating the uptake of nutrient in broilers.
In a herd, shell breakage amounts to lose, thus increasing the need for a farmer to increase minerals for improved shell quality.
While the role of trace minerals, such as copper (Cu), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), zinc (Zn) and selenium (Se), in positively improving bird health and performance is largely understood, the form in which they are supplied makes a big difference.
Many variables contribute to broiler breeder flock performance.
Supplementing minerals can improve broiler breeder weight gain, feed conversion egg shell and chick quality, hatchability, overall immunity and other productivity measures.
“Trace minerals are essential nutrients required in small daily amounts. They are vital in every aspect of life, deeply involved in many enzymatic reactions, acting as catalytic elements. They are a fundamental part of the formation, development and maintenance of organs and tissues in the body, such as skin, collagen, membranes, bones, etc. Among other functions, trace minerals play crucial roles in immune response, haemoglobin formation, the metabolism of glucose and thyroid hormones and as part of antioxidants and stress controllers,” explained Dr Leonardo Linares, Global RNS Species Leader – Poultry at Zinpro.
Selenium is used for cellular protection of the reproductive tract. Copper is used for eggshell development, pigment and collagen formation.
Manganese is important for the eggshell membrane and helps with the formation of bone and the organic matrix of eggshells.
Zinc can be used for bone and eggshell calcification, keratin shell membrane formation and eggshell carbonate production.
Mineral nutrition plays a vital role in improving eggshell quality, but also a range of factors ranging from age, management, environment and genetics determine the overall impact.