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Morphological changes of the muscovy duckling small intestine during development

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The morphology of the small intestine was investigated in Muscovy ducklings before and after the hatching period using light micoscopy. The villi, crypt depth, villi : crypt (V : C) ratio, were measured in embryos on days 24 and 30 of development, on the day of hatching, and in neonates on days 2, 9 and 13 post-hatching. The height, width and perimeter (girth of villi) of small intestinal villi significantly increased with age (P < 0.05). Villi number (per transverse section of small intestine) decrease from 2 to 13 days post-hatching (P < 0.05). The crypt depth and width were significantly affected by age from hatching to 2 days of age (P < 0.05). The number of crypts increased significantly in the duodenum and jejunum between hatching and 9 days of age (P < 0.05). In the duodenum and jejunum, the V : C ratio peaked at hatching, and decreased from hatching to 2 days of age (P < 0.05). The parameters of villi and crypt of the small intestine rapidly changed between hatching and 9 days post hatch suggesting that the first week of life is a crucial step in physiological changes.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-02-01

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  • Avian Biology Research provides a forum for the publication of research in every field of ornithology. It covers all aspects of pure and applied ornithology for wild or captive species as well as research that does not readily fit within the publication objectives of other ornithological journals. By considering a wide range of research fields for publication, Avian Biology Research provides a forum for people working in every field of ornithology. The journal also includes sections on avian news, conference diary and book reviews.

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    Cover image:Grey Hypocolius (Hypocolius ampelinus) chicks in their nest. Photo by Dr Masoud Moosavi.

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