Successful broiler farming is only achievable when you follow some rules. There are rules for every business, and broiler farming is not an exception. In this article, I will not waste your time before sharing some rules that successful broiler farmers always obey. Let’s begin with the one you probably know already.
Don’t Starve Your Broilers
Those who have been practicing Broiler Farming for some time will agree with me when I say that broilers are “meat-making machines”. That’s what they are. These genetically endowed chickens are hardwired with the trait to grow very fast and reach market weight as early as 6 weeks. In fact, if you have been doing broiler farming for a while, you can almost notice their size and weight difference in the space of 12 hours. That is, when you leave them in the morning and come back in the evening, you will see that they have grown. Again, that’s what they are – meat-making machines.
To get the best from your broiler chickens and help them to maximize their growth potential, they must not be starved. A study claims that broilers begin to ‘eat up themselves’ (break down body fat) when starved for up to 6 hours. Give your birds as much feed as they can consume. After all, it’s what they convert into meat. But there is a clause on their feeding, and that’s discussed in the next point.
Broilers Say Heat is a Bastard!
You and I may have ways of escaping from the effect of excessive heat, but there is almost nothing broilers can do if you expose them to excess heat. This is why it is important to consider the heat factor when considering the type of housing to use. You must do everything possible to keep them cool at all times. This includes high roof, sufficient shade, cool water and lesser feed during hot days. For the feed, it is better not to feed your broilers if you see them panting during hot days. Giving them feed will only add to the heat stress that is already killing them.
You may also like: Heat Stress: A Major Concern in Broiler Production
Brood Less in Broiler Farming
If you are planning to brood for four weeks, then you are not planning for broilers. Maybe cockerels and layers. Because of the mechanical action of eating and the feed metabolism process, broilers generate a lot of heat that makes supplementary heat almost unnecessary. Except in cold regions and on cold days, broilers do not require supplementary heat during a sunny day even in their first week. If you continue to give your broilers supplementary heat, you may start noticing sudden death from the third week. Remember that broilers say heat is a bastard!
You Can’t Be Rigid with Your Vaccination Schedule
Although broiler chickens usually come with a vaccination schedule from the hatchery (you will usually get the schedule when you order in large quantities and directly from the hatchery), broiler farming is one of the businesses that requires flexibility, and you cannot afford to be rigid. Broiler vaccination schedule is supposed to serve as a guide for the broiler farmer. It’s intended to show him when to vaccinate and which vaccine he is to use per time. However, it is important to note that vaccinations can be deadly if administered unwisely.
It is said that you don’t vaccinate sick birds, but some farmers seem to forget this fact. They rush to meet up with their vaccination schedule. For instance, you might want to vaccinate your broilers on day 21. However, if you notice coccidia among the flock on day 20, you must wait. Do not vaccinate the birds until you have treated them for coccidiosis. Keep in mind – Vaccines will only work to your advantage when your chickens are healthy.
Plan With Your Target Weight
Some people start broiler farming without a proper plan about the target weight of the birds and the length of time required to attain the weight. Raising broilers for longer than the required time will usually amount to loss on the part of the farmer.
If you are targeting festive periods like Easter and Christmas, don’t start earlier than necessary. To get a weight around 2.5 – 3.5 kg, you should work towards achieving it within 6-9 weeks, depending on your feed formula. Laying your hands on an excellent feed formula will help you to achieve a remarkable weight within a short time. Keeping your birds for up to 12 weeks is becoming a waste of time and resources. Avoid it if possible.
Broiler farming is a very lucrative business if you do it as you ought to, and the above listed rules must be followed to succeed as a broiler farmer. I wish you a wonderful farming experience.
Feel free to share!
Others also read: 4 Proven Shortcuts to Maximize Poultry Profit