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Chickens - Special Tropics
Hot Weather Management of Poultry
Hot weather can have a severe impact on poultry performance. Production efficiency can be affected long before the temperature reaches a level at which survival becomes a concern. Table 1 is a general guide to the reaction of adult poultry to various temperatures. Heat stress begins when the ambient temperature climbs above 80oF and is readily apparent above 85oF. When a bird begins to pant, physiological changes have already started within its body to dissipate excess heat. Even before the bird reaches this point, anything that you do to help birds remain comfortable will help maintain optimum growth rates, hatchability, egg size, egg shell quality, and egg production.
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Keep Feed "Healthy" in the Summer
The hot summer months are a real challenge for those producing poultry, either on a commercial scale or in backyard flocks. Chickens can tolerate a cold environment much better than a hot one. For this reason, it is commonly recognized that during the summer we must provide an ample supply of cool, fresh water and places for birds to get out of the sun. However, little attention has been given to the fact that hot, humid summer conditions also create problems for feed quality.
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