Poultry Housing – The Basic Requirements to Consider
Chicken farming has become a profitable business lately and its good to try it out. One factor to consider before any other is poultry housing. Every poultry production system must provide the most important requirements. Good examples include the following:
Safety from weather: Domestic birds must be shielded from the cold, rain, sun and wind. Newly hatched chicks need a source of warmth as a basic requirement to shield them against harsh weather conditions.
Safety from predators: The chickens have many predators including snakes, rodents, foxes, dogs and other animals. The best way to solve this problem is to confine chickens in modern structures. These are large installations with concrete floors, electric fences, strong walls and other features. This discourages the predators from digging under floors and walls. Wire mesh doors are also very necessary not to forget meshed windows. Make sure that the available domestic birds are supplied with food and water. Ensure proper hygiene of the poultry house as well.
Read also: Poultry Farm management systems
Adequate ventilation: When planning a poultry housing exercise, keep ventilation requirement in mind. A good flow and circulation of air is an essential element in any chicken house. To achieve this goal, it’s imperative to consider the poultry production capacity. One can do the large-scale poultry farming or small-scale poultry farming. The necessary structures in both cases are different in sizes and designs. Numerous birds require a big housing unit with adequate ventilation features. This prevents poisonous gases such as ammonia, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide from harming the birds. Fewer birds require small poultry houses with windows and vents on one side of the house. This is to provide abundant exposure to air. The farmers who live in warmer climates should build structures with open sides.
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Heat control: It is good to build poultry houses in such a way that heat can be controlled. Too much heat could even kill the birds not to mention it as a constraint to fruitful poultry farming. On the other hand, temperatures below freezing point should be prevented. Surprisingly freezing temperatures are not very risky for chickens. If temperatures go up to forty degrees, inside the poultry house, the birds cannot survive. At this heat range or over, the birds’ stress levels go up quickly. At 46 degrees Celsius the birds could die. Potential farmers of chicken or any other domesticated birds must read books. Books contain facts about building materials and techniques to lower or raise temperatures. The chicken house construction procedure should be based on the type of local climate to control heat.
Humidity levels: As the farmer constructs the poultry houses, he or she must consider the humidity factor. The birds do not have sweat glands like humans hence their cooling system is via the beaks. When the humidity levels rise, this natural cooling mechanism fails.
Space needs in chicken houses:
Creating space happens to be the most important poultry housing principle. Space determines the quantity of birds you could keep. It also determines the kinds of poultry you could keep. Birds require space so that they can move freely and work out. Space is essential for creating chicken nests and perches too. When thinking of space creation, considering the type of bird species, breeds and production system used is vital. Always make sure that the chickens or any other domesticated birds are not congested in the house units.
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