Eggshell characteristics and penetration by Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis through the production period of a layer flock

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1. Egg weight, shell thickness, number of pores, cuticle deposition and ability of Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis (SE) to penetrate the shell were determined for eggs from one layer flock through the entire production period. 2. Penetration was assessed by filling the eggs with a selective medium that allowed visualising Salmonella growth on the inside of the shell and membrane complex. After inoculation of each shell with on average 2.59 log cfu, the eggs were stored for up to 20 d at 20 degrees C and 60% relative humidity (RH). 3. On average 38.7% of the eggshells became penetrated. Mostly penetration occurred on d 3. Although it affected all shell characteristics studied, hen age did not significantly influence eggshell penetration. 4. No correlations were observed between any of the shell characteristics studied and the ability of SE to penetrate the shell. The growth of SE on the shell is of major importance because shell contamination at 20 d of storage and SE penetration were highly correlated.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBritish Poultry Science
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)694-700
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2005


  • Aging/physiology
  • Animals
  • Chickens/*microbiology/*physiology
  • Egg Shell/*microbiology
  • Female
  • Ovum/*microbiology
  • Porosity
  • Research Support,Non-U.S.Gov't
  • Salmonella enteritidis/classification/*isolation & purification

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