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Poultry

Animal Husbandry

QuestionAnswer
What is the wild ancestor of chickens? Wild Jungle Fowl of SE Asia :)
What are the two types of chickens? What are each used for? Commercial layers and broiler chickens Egg production and meat production
What are four selection characteristics of the commercial layer? Good liveability + resistance to disease, good feathering, extended egg laying season, docile temperament + absence of broodiness, slow growth rate + light mature weight, efficient food conversion ratio
What are four selection characteristics of the broiler chicken? Good liveability + disease resistance, good feathering, rapid growth rate, good leg health, good food conversion ratio, good conformation, correct flesh colouring
Explain the different 'levels' of chicken breeding Nucleus/elite stock --> grandparent stock --> broiler breeders/parent stock (2 way crossbreed) --> broilers/commercial layers (4 way crossbreed. Ps you should probably be able to draw this :P
What is the pyramid effect of chicken farming? Primary breeder --> Supply parent farms --> Commercial producers - meat/eggs
How long does it take from birth --> plate for a broiler chicken? 6 weeks :(
What are the most important things a poultry vet has to deal with on farms? Bio-security, no new animals - all in-all out, vaccination programs, monitor bird health and productivity
What is the system for breeders/parent stock? What is the ratio of cockerels:hens? Floor based 1:10
How are turkeys mated? Artificial insemination - MILKED!!!!!!!
What is the big problem in the hatchery? Risk of contamination
Automated nest box and collection systems --> eggs collected regularly --> only 'clean' eggs stored in cool room --> THE HATCHERY??? Egg receiving area --> egg holding area --> egg cooler --> setters (incubators) --> hatcher room --> tray dumping --> chick processing area --> chick holding area --> chick loading area
What are the two types of setters (incubators)? Single stage = all eggs in on day 0, all out day 18 Multi-stage = batches, older eggs 'heat up' younger eggs
Describe the egg shell Calcium carbonate with pores for gas exchange
What temperature are incubators? 37-38oC
Humidity is monitored by egg weight loss - what is the maximum weight loss? 12%
What is the purpose of automated egg turning? Stop the embryo sticking to the shell
How long does it take for a chick to hatch? What happens between them being taken out of the incubator (18 days) and hatching? 21 days Put in flat trays in incubator
How do you check the fertility of an egg? What happens to infertile eggs? Shine a light through the shell Infertiles are taken out otherwise they will explode in the incubator and contaminate others
What do chicks do before they hatch? 'Pip' = peck into the air space in egg
How do you sex chicks (ie what is the difference between males and females)? Look at feathers (fan them out) Males = primaries are the same length as coverts Females = primaries are longer than coverts
What happens to the parent stock to make sure they live past 6 weeks? Their feed is restricted - they get fed one day but skip the next :O or their feed is bulked up with bran husks
What are the advantages of restricting the feed of broiler chickens parent stock? Improved immunity, less skeletal problems and reduced mortality
What is the target weight of a broiler chicken after brooding and growing period? 2.2 kg
What is the stocking density of the barn? 15-18 birds/m2 or approx. 33 kg/m2
What happens to the barn 24 hours before chicks come? Wind-proofed and insulated, cleaned, litter must be correct depth and quality, pre-heated, feeders and drinkers arranged within easy reach
What are the characteristics of good litter? Absorptive, biodegradable, low dust levels, comfortable, biosecure source, no contaminants
Can you use hardwood shavings as litter for broilers? No - toxic to chickens :O
What should the temperature be for broiler houses? Humidity? Initial = 32oC --> down 2-3oC a weeks --> Final = 21-23oC Humidity = 60-70%
What happens when the ventilation is wrong (too hot, too cold, too draughty)? What does good ventilation prevent? Too hot - chickens around the outside Too cold - chickens huddled together in middle Too draughty - chickens huddled together in a certain place furthest away from draught Good ventilation prevents build-up of noxious gases (eg ammonia from pee)
What are the two types of lighting systems? Continuous day and intermittent
What are the two types of waterers? Nipple drinkers and bell drinkers
What are the two types of feeders? Chain feeders and pan feeders
When are chickens fed and what happens to the feeders daily? Fed ad libitum (constantly) Height adjusted daily (birds getting bigger!!)
What are two problems of free range systems? Bird flu (and other diseases) from wild birds Ectoparasites and worms
What are the consequences of incorrect nutrition? Fall-off in growth rate, excess abdominal fat, excess carcass fat, reduction in breast meat yield, mortality (Ascites, flip-over)
Do males and females grow better together or separately? Separately
What vaccinations do chickens get in the hatchery? What age are they? What is the method? Infectious bronchitis (spray) and Marek's disease (injection) - both at a day old
What vaccinations do chickens get on the farm? What age are they? What is the method? Infectious bursal disease (in water), infectious bronchitis (spray) and Newcastles disease (in water) - all at 2-3 weeks old Infectious bursal disease (in water) - at 4 weeks old
What are coccidistat drugs for? Coccidiosis
What are the two main human diseases we can catch off of chickens? Salmonella and campylobacter
What are the two major metabolic diseases of broilers? Sudden death syndrome (or flip-over) and Ascites
How are chickens killed? Electrically stunned the heads cut off (hot water to get rid of the feathers)
What is the European Efficiency Factor? EEF = Liveability (%) x Liveweight (kg) divided by Age (days) x FCR all multiplied by 100 (to determine how the flock is doing)
What is the hatchability of fertile eggs (commercial layers)? 85%
What happens to the male chicks after sexing of the commercial layers? Culled (only females can produce eggs!!)
During the brooding/rearing period (DO - 18 weeks) - what type of production is the floor/cage system suitable for? Floor system - any type of production Cage system - suitable for layers going into cage production
What is the stocking density of a) floor system and b) cage system? Floor system - week 1 = 40 chicks/m2, week 2 = 30 birds/m2, week 3 = 20 birds/m2, week 4+ = 6-8 birds/m2 Cage system - weeks 1-4 = 50 birds/m2, weeks 4+ = 20 birds/m2
What are the 'feeding systems' of commercial layers? Chick feed --> grower feed --> pre-lay feed VERY DIFFERENT FROM BROILERS!!!
Why are lighting programmes very important for commercial layers? Controls sexual maturity, encourage growth, achieve recommended weight at onset of lay, produces more eggs as 'always daytime'
DON'T increase or decrease number of hours/intensity of lighting during...? Rearing
What are the disease which affect layers? Mareks disease, Newcastles disease, infectious bronchitis, infectious bursal disease, epidemic tremor (AEV), avian influenza - get vaccinations from DO
When is the light reduced to 9 hours a day to stimulate the birds to come into lay? 18 weeks
What is the purpose of beak trimming? Chickens try to peck spider mites off each other but end up pecking out feathers - if there is blood, they get excited and cannibalise each other :O
What are the two methods of beak trimming? What age is it performed at? Hot blade or infra-red laser (cauterisation) 4-6 days
What are the five main parts of the egg? Shell, membranes, albumen, yolk and air space
What happens at the magnum (chickens fallopian tube)? The embryo receives the albumen
What happens at the shell gland (chickens fallopian tube)? The embryo receives the shell
What are a couple of advantages of cages? Easily controlled environmental conditions, reduced outbreaks of vices due to small colony sizes, good disease control, separation of eggs from faeces, no threat from predators
What are a couple of the disadvantages of cages? Lack of space prevents expression of normal behaviour, confinement leads to weak and broken bones (osteoporosis), feather and foot problems
What do enriched cages have that battery cages don't? Nest - lay eggs in privacy, litter - dust bath, perch space
What are the other types of housing for commercial layers (other than cages)? Barn - deep litter, perchery/aviary, barn and free range
From the graph about production targets for commercial layers : what does point of lay, % hen housed and % hen day mean? Point of lay - 50% of birds have laid their eggs % hen housed - use number of birds in the house to work it out (some will have died) % hen day - ignores mortality
What does force-moult mean? In USA, they remove feed/water and turn lights down to encourage the birds to lose their feathers (in other situations it is a natural process) so that they produce better quality eggs - BAD!!!
What are some of the factors affecting performance of commercial layers? Nutritional programme, temperature and ventilation, lighting programme, housing system, bird health and welfare status
What are the three main breeds of turkeys? What one is the most popular commercial breed? Black Norfolk/Black Spanish, Broad breasted bronze, Broad breasted white (this one is the most popular commercial breed!)
What is the production system for turkeys? Turkey breeders --> hatchery (28 days to hatch) --> DO poults to Grower farms --> after 14-22 weeks Culled and Processed
What are the three main selection characteristics of a turkey? Improved food conversion ratio, increased breast meat yield and meatier thighs, broad-breasted whites
What are the three main types of housing for turkeys? Controlled environment, Pole barn (open sided with fixed windows), Free range (same as pole barn only with access to pasture land)
How are hens (female turkeys) artificially inseminated? Toms/Stags (male turkeys) are milked once a week, the sperm is put into the sperm host glands (junction between vagina and shell gland), sperm remains viable for 2-3 weeks but hens usually inseminated every week
What is the stocking density of turkeys? <38 kg/m2
Did you know that... ...every year, the President pardons one commercial turkey and it gets to live the rest of it's life in a nice garden!!!!
What is the snood (turkeys)? Fleshy growth on male's nose - usually they are de-snooded at <3 weeks
Do turkeys need to be coaxed to feed? Yes :O
What age and weight are turkeys killed at (male and female)? Male - 20 weeks = 16 kg Female - 14 weeks = 7.5 kg
What are the two main welfare issues in laying hens? Feather pecking and cannibalism, bone fracture
What are the two main welfare issues in broilers? Food restriction and leg problems
Remember... ...Freedom Foods!!! (RSPCA)
Created by: Eilidh