Keywords: anticoccidial drugs, anticoccidial vaccine, broiler chickens, coccidiosis control, vaccination, poultry production, mortality, feed conversion rate
Efficacy and benefits of prevention of coccidiosis in broilers by vaccination in comparison to anticoccidial drug program
In poultry production control of coccidiosis still relies heavily on adding anticoccidial drugs to feed. In the present study the efficacy of coccidiosis prevention in broilers by vaccination in comparison to anticoccidial drug programs was evaluated. The efficacy of the live attenuated vaccine Livacox T administered to broiler chickens was investigated in a laboratory trial by assessing protection against challenge with a mixture of field isolates of the Eimeria species. The vaccine was compared with an anticoccidial drug shuttle program in field conditions. No clinical coccidiosis was diagnosed in the vaccinated flocks. Using additional criteria reflecting economic benefits, such as mortality and feed conversion rate, the performance of vaccinated birds was comparable to those obtained in medicated flocks. The results indicate that coccidiosis in broilers may be successfully controlled by vaccination instead of using anticoccidial drugs.