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Hepatic assessment of duck layers (Anas platyrhynchos domestica) from semi-free range farms in Misamis Occidental and Zamboanga del Sur, Mindanao, Philippines

By: Jade Marie M. Sobrepeña, Henry I. Rivero, Olga M. Nuñeza

Key Words: Farm management system, Hepatosomatic index, Histopathology, Liver, Organosomatic index.

Int. J. Biosci. 8(4), 111-123, April 2016.



Farmers in the Philippines are accustomed to raising mallard ducks (Anas platyrhynchos domestica) in a semi-free range management system where ducks are not totally confined within cages or houses. This study assessed the hepatic status of layer ducks with age range of 13-24 months from two farms practicing semi-free range management system in Misamis Occidental (Group I, n=10) and Zamboanga del Sur (Group II, n=9). Determination of hepatosomatic index (HSI), identification of external manifestations of liver lesions, and histopathological examination were conducted after a 30-day period of rearing in confinement in Iligan City. The HSI of the sexually mature and laying hens from Group II (2.47±0.832%) was higher than that of Group I, (2.22±0.57%). Approximately 70% of the liver samples from the two farms were observed to have signs of necrosis and fatty liver conditions. Histological examinations of liver showed hepatocytes with minimal to extensive vacuolations, dilated hepatic sinusoids and canaliculi, and lymphocytic infiltrations, which are all signs of hepatic tissue damage caused by still unknown toxicants. Environmental factors brought about by the type of farm management could have adverse effects on the hepatic status of the duck layers.


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