Heat stress

Heat stress

Many animal producers operate in consistently tropical climates. Others not, but they face rising temperatures due to global warming. Considering that stress from heat already starts at low temperatures for several production animals it is a worldwide threat with no single solution. Animals facing the threat of heat possess several coping mechanisms. These enable the animal to survive the heat but severely impacts their production parameters. In poultry, for example, stress can lead to a poor egg production. The impact is also highly variable for each animal species and for each individual within that species. Individuals are not equal in their ability to recover from heat stress episodes. Therefore, managing heat stress implies dedicated and adapted strategies for each of them individually. Feeding strategies are versatile and help the animal to better protect itself when the threat hits. Electrolyte balance and osmoregulation are important mechanism to consider during heat stress and can be steered via nutrition and appropriate feed additives.

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