By Umar Nsubuga
Samuel Nyabongo Kimoome, the proprietor of Kimoome Mixed Farm in Kanyate village, Kyakaigo parish in Kabarole district and a poultry farmer, says poultry rearing is profitable and farmers do not need a lot of money to start up a unit. Only certain factors need to be put into consideration.
-The birds need proper housing and ventilation, with a rainproof roof. Chicks, especially are sensitive and prone to viral attacks. This prevents dumpiness, which causes diseases like New Castle, fowl pox and typhoid. Farmers must vaccinate the birds within 30 days to protect them against diseases.
-Local chicken, vaccination at day one and subsequent doses of up to 30 days is sufficient unless there is a major disease outbreak.
-New Castle usually attacks layers during the hot season, causing the eggs to break before they are hatched. If the disease re-occurs, the farmer should repeat the vaccination.
-The vaccines can be supplemented with local herbs such as the moringa, which is said to be very effective in treating and preventing fowl pox, coccidiosis and typhoid. The moringa chicken herb is also highly recommended for parent stock because it boosts immunity.
-Proper feeding is also important. Some farmers are able to mix their feeds.
-Thirty kilogrammes of mukene fish to be added to every 100kg of high-quality maize brand. To this, add pre-mixed like cotton seed cake and soya flour. This kind of meal is highly recommended for chicks up to 30 days old. After the first 30 days, mukene can be reduced to between 10-15kg per 100kg of maize brand.
-Eggs that are delivered to hatcheries must be clean and must not be exposed to water as this creates pores that can affect hatching.
-When picking eggs from the laying boxes and putting them into trays, the smaller conical side should sit at the bottom.
-Breeders must ensure that they get healthy cocks to ensure maximum fertilisation of the eggs. Every 20 layers should have at least one cock or better still, there should be a cock for every 10 layers.
-There must be a consistent supply of clean water in the watering cans, as 30% of the egg composition is liquid.