If you are in the poultry business think twice before turning a blind eye towards a sightless fowl as a study reveals that a strain of chickens that are naturally blind produce more eggs than their sighted counterparts and lights influences the overall production.
According to a research conducted by the National Institute of Animal Nutrition and Physiology (NIANP), Bangalore, a genetically blind strain of white leghorn birds called Smoky Joes start reproduction earlier and produces more eggs than the average chicken.
The study was kicked off in end-2008 to understand how light influences the production pattern of eggs started and its results came in July 2010.
It was carried out by three NIANP scientists --I J Reddy, G Ravikiran and S Mondal.
The research found that changing wavelength/spectrum of light improved reproduction in birds.
It was found that while a domestic hen kept under white incandescent light (a common practice in poultry firms) produced around 300 eggs in 52 weeks. The same increased by 5 per cent and 3 per cent respectively when it was exposed to red spectrum of light (650 nm) and to blue spectrum of light (475 nm) over the same period, sources said.
NM (Nano Metre) is used for measuring wavelength of light.
Scientists have recently started the second trial to authenticate the preliminary findings.
The trial would be complete in a year after which the report would be sent to Union Agriculture ministry through NIANP, sources said.
The findings would help poultry farmers in meticulous use of lightings for better egg production, they added.