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Predicting carcass energy content and composition in broilers using the group method of data handling-type neural networks

  • A. FARIDI (a1), M. MOTTAGHITALAB (a2), H. DARMANI-KUHI (a2), J. FRANCE (a3) and H. AHMADI (a4)...


The success of poultry meat production has been strongly related to improvements in growth and carcass yield, mainly by increasing breast proportion and reducing carcass fat. Conventional laboratory techniques for determining carcass composition are expensive, cumbersome and time consuming. These disadvantages have prompted a search for alternative methods. In this respect, the potential benefits from modelling growth are considerable. Neural networks (NNs) are a relatively new option for modelling growth in animal production systems. One self-organizing sub-model of artificial NN is the group method of data handling-type NN (GMDH-type NN). The present study aimed at applying the GMDH-type NNs to data from two studies with broilers in order to predict carcass energy (CEn, MJ/g) content and relative growth (g/g of body weight) of carcass components (carcass protein, breast muscle, leg and thigh muscles, carcass fat, abdominal fat, skin fat and visceral fat). The effective input variables involved in the prediction of CEn and carcass fat content using data from the first study were dietary metabolizable energy (ME, kJ/kg), crude protein (CP, g/kg of diet), fat (g/kg of diet) and crude fibre (CF, g/kg of diet). For data from the second study, the effective input variables involved in the prediction of carcass components were dietary ME (MJ/kg), CP (g/kg of diet), methionine (g/kg of diet), lysine (g/kg of diet) and body weight (kg). Quantitative examination of the goodness of fit, using R2 and error measurement indices, for the predictive models proposed by the GMDH-type NN revealed close agreement between observed and predicted values of CEn and carcass components.


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