Good start in pullet or broiler in order to be able to realize the full genetic potential of a bird begins with the first one week of the life of such bird.
A typical poultry farmer is interested in optimum performance of his bird which would turn to maximum profits .And as such the best time to express this concern in the care of your bird is during brooding period. Many of we farmers do not pay attention to these details until when the bird are mature by which it might be too late to achieve good results.
The first seven days of life of a chicks are the most important. During the first seven days about 80% of the energy is used for growth while 20% is used for maintenance. As the bird grow older, reverse is the case .
The early period of life is the best time to ensure that our bird have access to best feed of 21% protein and 2900kcal energy and live in such conditions that enable them to make maximum use of the nutrients supplied for growth.
For pullets, try to achieve 70g weight by 7days and for broilers, 180g at 7 days. If your bird is well nurtured this way, they wont only get good body weight at an older age , but they would also build immunity against diseases and also use their feed efficiently for the rest of their life.
Other benefits include the development of body organs like liver, spleen,that are built for immunity will have the highest growth within seven days .
These immunogenic organs will grows several times their sizes at day one and lay down a good foundation to fight diseases for best performance throughout their life cycle.
There are some management practices of importance that will positively impact on early chick weight gain and resultant future performance of the adult bird.
In your first one week of young chick management these are some practical poultry Management actions to take.
1 Correct brooding environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity and non polluted carbon dioxide level to stimulate feed consumption should be closely monitored. Too high or too low temp reaction will be obvious in the behaviour of the chicks. As the rule of thumb, too high temperature would lead to chicks to cluster towards the side of the pen house while a too low temperature will see the birds cluster at a very close proximity to the heat source.
2 Broiler chicks should have easy access to water and quality feed (feeding and drinking space must be strictly adhered to). Your birds shouldn’t move more than one meter seeking for feed or water. If not, inaccessibility to feed would gravely reflect in their 7 day body weight which would ultimately reflect in the market body weight of the birds.
3 For broilers,follow up feed intake by checking the crops at least 95% of the crop should be full within 24hrs. With that you can be sure that your birds are actively feeding thereby having a higher chance of performing better either health-wise or body-weight wise.
4 Smaller chicks should be separated from the heavier birds after day seven and ensure that they are getting served feed separately from te main floor.
5 Water intake is very essential to avoid dehydration which may subsequently lead to loss of body weight
In our next poultry training series, we would discuss on how you can attain a perfect 7 day body weight that would ensure the best performance of your poultry birds till they are ready for market.
Now that you have learnt something, dont forget to like and share this enlightening post ,so that others can benefit from this educative poultry training series.
Questions are also welcomed!