Make sure you keep an eye on your chicken house at night!
Your best way to see if your chickens are happy is to use all 5 senses.
Look at your birds
- you will see an unhappy chicken by the way it looks - is it withdrawn? - away from the other birds, is it limping or panting? Are the feathers shiny and fluffed - or are the birds feathers falling out? Are the birds attacking a single bird? Are the birds gathered around the drinkers equally or are they favouring a certain area of the house? Are the birds gathered and bunched around heaters - or are they standing as far as they can from the heaters?
Listen to the chickens
- are they dead quiet, or are they making soft happy clucking sounds?
Smell your house
- you will quickly pick up if there is chlorine (too much water or leaking water). A bad smelling chicken house is a sure sign of trouble and disease.
Feel your chickens
- pick up random birds - feel the wings, run your fingers up the breast and over the stomach. Feel for swelling and abnormalities.
Taste the house
- crazy, but the after taste left in your mouth once you have spent time in a dirty or diseased poultry house is an indication of disease. Taste the water that the chickens are drinking - if you do not like it - or are hesitant to drink the water - so too will the chickens be unhappy about using the poultry drinkers.
CHICKEN SHACK AGENCIES
BROILER FARM - MANAGEMENT
15. NIGHT CHECK
18.2 Duties - Poultry man night duty : -
1. He will move from house to house and check each gas cylinders manifold system, brooder, drinker line, and bell drinker. Chick fount. Chick feed trays and house temperature.
2. Each house must be covered at least twice before the break and again after the break.
3. If anything is found out of control, the Asst. farmer / farmer must be contacted immediately.
4. When the site is left at 05h00, there must be enough feed in every chick feed tray to last until 07h30
5. When the site is left at 05h00, there must be enough water in every chick fount to last until 07h30.
6. A list of faults must be handed to the farmer each morning.
7. The employee who works at night is to have a torch, which is operational at all, times.
NB Make sure that the temperature, water and feed is correct at all times
17.1 The procedure for night checks is as follows :
a) Before 17h00 the Asst. farmer to ensure that all houses warning alarms (phase failure, low temperature and high temperature) are working and set correct and cheat that security lights are working.
b) Rearing houses to be locked at 17h00 key are to be locked in the key cabinet.
c) Night checks to commence at 19h00 to 05h00 by the poultry man night duty.
d) The Asst. farmer / farmer are expected to check the chickens houses when you are on duty each night after19h00 and each morning before 07h00 for the first seven days after each house has been placed with day old chicks.
e) Poultry man night duty working hours ; -
* Starting time ; 19h00
* Break : 24h00 - 01h00
* Finishing time : 05h00
chickens at night, birds dying at night, night time care of poultry, poultry drinkers, poultry disease