November 3, 2021

Innovation Showcase 1.10: The colour in the barn! Does wavelength affect broiler production and welfare?

Did you know that bird visual ability is better than yours? Vision is likely the most important of the five senses for birds! And yes – it is better than what humans experience! Birds see in colour, as do humans. However, they actually see more colours than we do – into the ultraviolet spectrum. Their optic system has numerous differences as compared to the human optic system, including numerous differences in the number and types of cones (responsible for vision in bright light). Light impacts humans by reaching the brain through our eyes. That also occurs in poultry, but in addition, light can penetrate through the skull to reach the brain! And interestingly, wavelengths (which correspond to different light colours) penetrate at different levels, leading to the possibility that different light colours (or wavelengths) could have different effects on birds! Learn more from the University of Saskatchewan's Dr. Karen Schwean-Lardner about how light wavelength, provided to broilers at the same light intensity, impacts your flocks!

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