Poultry Research Facility

By: Vanessa Beeson

Poultry <span>Research</span> Facility

Photo by Dominique Belcher

A poultry research facility at Mississippi State's H.H. Leveck Animal Research Center was recently renovated to further research and education.

The newly-renovated facility includes an automated production system controller, cool cells, AV heaters, inlet machines, vent doors, energy-efficient insulation, larger experimental units, cabled feeder and drinker systems, and LED lighting.

The renovations were made possible through in-kind donations from six industry partners and the university's Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station. Donors included Acme Ag, which donated fans; Cumberland, which donated an edge controller, cool cells, heaters, inlet machines and vent doors; Valco, which donated drinkers, end kits, and regulators; Agri-business, which donated cool cell pads, winching material, and plumbing; Robinson Electric and Goodnight Electric, which donated electrical wire; and Insul-pro, which donated fiberglass spray foam walls.

Mary Beck, professor and head of the Department of Poultry Science, said the renovation will help researchers better replicate the commercial setting.

"As one of six poultry science degree granting departments in the U.S., it is paramount that our research programs and teaching curriculum mirror current industry practices," Beck said. "This research facility has the tools and infrastructure necessary to mimic current state-of-the-art commercial poultry facilities."

Kelley Wamsley, assistant professor in poultry science, helped oversee the renovation and is conducting the first research trial in the facility.

The first trial evaluates how certain enzymes affect the performance and processing characteristics in male broilers. The trial is sponsored by the Mississippi Initiative for Poultry Industry Research.

"The house was designed with this first trial in mind and future trials to produce data that will directly benefit the Mississippi poultry industry. Also, with the installation of new and current equipment available to the industry, generated data will be more relevant to current industry practices as compared to other research facilities," Wamsley said.