1. The influence of the gut microflora on fasting heat production in chicks was investigated. 2. Single Comb White Leghorn chicks were fed on an adequate diet from 2 to 12 d of age and then fasted for 3 d. Fasting heat production was estimated from changes in body composition and energy content of droppings from days 1 to 3 of fasting. Measurements of body temperature and plasma thyroxine concentration were also made. 3. Body fat content was consistently higher in germ-free (GF) chicks than in conventional (CV) counterparts during the starvation period, whereas no difference was found in body protein content. The GF birds had a significantly higher body temperature than the CV controls with no change in plasma thyroxine concentration. 4. It was concluded that estimated fasting heat production of chicks was increased by the absence of the gut microflora.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Food Science
- Animal Science and Zoology