The project investigates potential interactions/associations between the behavior, gut microbiota and physiology (e.g. immunology) of laying hens. To do so, the effects of experimental manipulations on phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and gut microbiota composition are investigated. Data collection is conducted at different time points during ontogeny and takes different genetics into account. This approach facilitates the identification of biologically relevant genotype-environment interactions and helps to assess how easily observed interactions/associations can be transferred (external validity). Further, we investigate, again also considering genetic effects. The results of this project thus contribute to the understanding of the development of animal welfare and animal health problems in laying hens. The work on this interdisciplinary project will be conducted in collaboration with other FLI institutes.
Susnato Das susnato.das@~@fli.de