POULTY PRODUCTION AND MANAGEMENT
Commercial poultry production is being practiced by a few farmers who have ready market for their products. These are farmers generally near big towns and market centres where egg and chicken consumption is relatively higher than rural areas.
As in the case of pig feeds chicken feed availability has been one of the main production problems coupled with very low quality and uncontrolled high feeds prices.
For commercial production, farmers buy day-old chicks from hatcheries which are found mainly around Nairobi. Not very much work has been done on local birds although they are important for egg and meat production in the rural areas.
Poultry Production and Management Practises
Breeds (Layers and Broilers)
The materials available from hatcheries are mainly hybrids such as brown eggers, Isa Brown shavers etc.
Day old chicks should be ordered from reputed hatcheries for good quality and free of diseases. Orders for day-old chick are done through K.F.A or through Ministry of Livestock staff at the district. It is important to have them vaccinated for mareks disease at the hatchery.
Use broilers start mash from 0-4 weeks of age. Use broilers follow up mash from 4-7 (10) weeks of age.
Feed the birds and lib
Normally birds will consume 4-5kg/bird to reach slaughter weight of 2 kg. LW. In 7 weeks. Check feed wastage on the litter to control by using proper feeders and proper filling.
NB: Do not keep broilers if you do not have ready market. After they reach their market weight they should go or the farmer will not make any profit.
What to provide in poultry house
- on the floor provide litter rice straw, husks wood shaving etc.
- provide adequate water troughs
- provide adequate nests fro layers
- at the to the unit provides foot bath to disinfect workers and visitors to the unit
- provide a store for both eggs and feeds
Guide for Extension Agents to Check at far level
- Management of Chicks
- Check source of day old chicks
- Check the brooding method being used
- Are the chicks getting excess, inadequate or adequate heat?
- It the brooder set as recommended?
- Have the chicks been vaccinated against Mareks, New Castle Disease and Fowl Typhoid?
- Check feeds, feeders, water and waterers.
- What kind of litter is the farmer using? (e.g. saw dust, straw, wood shaving husks, etc) saw dust should not be used for chicks
- Check for feed wastage form the litter
- Any danger of fire in the brooder (e.g. when using charcoal for heating)
- Is the litter wet/damp?
- Chicks will require fowl typhoid vaccination 8-9th week of age.
Production Factors Calculations
There are many production factors which each poultry farmer has to know and review them from time to time t assess production efficiencies, e.g.
Average No. of Eggs per hen
Total No. of Eggs
Av. No. of hens
Total No. of Eggs x 100
Total No. of days x No. of birds houses
Total loss to date x 100
Total No. of hens at the time of housing
Kg Feed/Doz eggs
Total kg feed used
Total Dozen eggs produced
Average Feed Cost/hen
Total Feed Cost
Average No. of hens
Return above feed cost/ dozen eggs
Price/dozen eggs MINUS
Feed cost per dozen eggs
Total No. of Eggs Broken x 100
Total No. of Eggs produced