Poultry farming is the best way of raising birds domestically or commercially. The primary reason for poultry farming is for meat and eggs, but secondarily it is used to generate feathers. Here is the primary importance of Chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese; however, guinea fowl and squabs are primarily of native interest.
Types of Poultry
If we discuss chicken meat and eggs’ mass production, it was initiated in the early 20th century. But the industries which were busy in the production of chicken meat exceeded egg production by the middle of that century. The marketing of chicken meat was growing so that the industries exports nearly 12.5 million tones by the early 21st century.
There are different types of breeds, such as American, Mediterranean, English, and Asiatic. Despite hundreds of species in existence, industries only give positions to those who can satisfy the public demand. Mostly, the Mediterranean breed, the single-comb white leghorn, is a prolific layer that reaches sexual maturity very fast is used throughout the egg industry globally. Moreover, the Cornish Cross is one of the most common breeds for commercial meat production, and it is valued due to its compact size and rapid growth.
Various common American breeds like Plymouth Rock, the Wyandotte, The New Hampshire, and the Rhode Island Red are used for dual-purpose, i.e., suitable for both eggs and meat. Another breed, the Asiatic Brahma, originated in the United States for the birds imported from china that generate large brown eggs and heart.
Turkey production also comes into height after the Second World War Maximum number of turkeys are raised in Canada even their ancestors still live wild in few areas of Europe, the United States, Brazil, and many more countries. Recently, hybrid white turkey is more dominant commercially. However, the Broad Breasted Bronze, the white Holland, the Broad Breasted White, and the Beltsville Small White are the common breeds in small farms.
One tom is needed per 8 or 10 hens for breeding the folks as the modern hybrid turkey is huge for natural breeding and should be artificially fertilized. In this 21st century, modern turkey breeding has reduced the food amount and the time to produce turkey meat. It is quite interesting to listen to that only in 12-14 weeks; a hen turkey eats about 16 kg of feed and earns 6-9 kilograms. Toms need a total of 36 kilograms of feed to gain 16-19 kg weight just in 16-19 weeks. 12 to 15 weeks aged turkey are marketed, and they can be raised on open land having self-feeders, heavy fencing, range shelters, rotated pasture, etc. But they can be grown under environmentally controlled conditions for commercial production.
Ducks are raised on a limited scale almost in every country as a small-farm enterprise, but some commercial plants are also constructed. Duck raising is not so hard and can be easily transported. It can be raised even in close confinement and generate nutritious and desirable eggs and meats after having some organic waste products and scattered grain. Like Khaki Campbell and Indian Runner ducks, some of the prolific layers generate 300 eggs per year on average.
Talking about the most popular breeds of duck in the United States, The Pekin duck is used for both egg and meat production.
Guinea fowl and squabs
Guinea Fowl are raised as a sideline but not commercially in most of countries. You can see a fairly extensive industry in Italy. These birds are mostly raised in yards having open-fronted shelters, and the species are utilized all over the world. These birds will be ready to sell only after 16-18 weeks of its age, and this trend is practiced in England.
Similarly, pigeons are also included in poultry. These birds are not used only as messengers and sports, but in some countries, it is used for meat of their squabs.
Most poultry industries prefer science that ensures a maximum energy intake for rapid growth and full-fat production. Reliable muscle, organ, skin, and feather growth is possible due to high-quality and well-balanced protein sources. Feeding Minerals to various poultry produce bones and eggs. Different Elements like Calcium, sodium, phosphorus, chlorine, potassium, manganese, iron, sulfur, copper, cobalt, iron, etc. are required to raise these poultry birds. Besides this, all types of vitamins are essential, and only due to proper feed can exceed poultry farming in a short time.
Management plays a vital role in every task, and even a poultry farm needs a controlled environment that avoids crowding, chilling, overheating, or frightening. It needs watering, feeding, egg gathering, and cleaning practices that should be highly mechanized. We can see the birds usually caged in wire cages that consist of two or three more animals per cage in poultry farming. But management should be different according to the species and breeds.
Poultry farming is an outstanding practice for every country and an excellent example of applying basic genetic principles of inbreeding and crossbreeding.