Vaccination of multi-age layer operations, wherein one million plus commercial layer chickens are housed, has been spurious until the development of a self-propelled, constant-speed spray vaccinator. Still, even with its use, live Mycoplasma gallisepticum (MG) vaccinations have been questionable in terms of seroconversion. Using the vaccinator as a research tool over the past 5 yr, factors have been elucidated which impact seroconversion to one live MG vaccine in particular, the F strain of MG (FMG). These factors include the type of nozzle used to spray the vaccine, the temperature of the water used to rehydrate and administer the vaccine, and the pH and osmolarity of the fluid used to apply the vaccine. In the present study, one farm was monitored for its seroconversion rates over 4½ yr, during which time the FMG vaccination protocol was amended as factors were identified that enhanced seroconversion rates. The results of this study showed that implementation and inclusion of the optimized factors into the vaccination protocol for FMG enhanced seroconversion rates because they went from an initial 50%–55% positive seroconversion rate to a consistent 100% positive seroconversion rate over the 56-mo study period.
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Vol. 54 • No. 3