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The agro-allied industry in recent years has experienced an impressive growth. This is especially true of the poultry farming sub-sector. With an increasing number of poultry farmers, their activities have significantly contributed in no small measure to food security across the world. In light of their contributions, there is a need to offer guidance on the steps to take and procedures that need to be followed to achieve enhanced productivity


This free poultry farming manual has been developed to achieve this purpose. It is designed to reach its target audience at no cost whatsoever as it contains the right procedures needed for success in poultry farming.

There has been an increased demand for poultry products both from consumers and other businesses that form the value chain of the poultry industry. With this increase in demand is the need to provide the right techniques for poultry farming.

Although poultry farming covers the rearing of several bird types that include chicken, ducks, guinea fowl etc, for the purpose of this manual, we will be concentrating on chicken production.

Systems of Chicken Production

Chicken is reared using different production techniques or system. This depends on the chicken breed, the type, its mortality rate among several other factors. The most common systems of chicken production include the free-range, the semi-intensive and the intensive systems of chicken production. Explaining these briefly;

The Free Range Poultry System

This system of poultry production is not commercial in nature and typically has 5 to 20 chickens in its herd. This system of poultry production is rural based, and hence, the chickens in most cases are local breeds.

A disadvantage of this system of poultry production is its tendency for exposure to predators, resulting in high mortality rate. Typically, the chickens are let loose to feed themselves with supplements provided by the owner.

The Semi-Intensive Poultry System

This system of chicken production is more regulated and vaccines are given to the birds to protect them from common livestock diseases. The herds can consist of 50 to 200 birds. Due to the enhanced care given to birds under the semi-intensive poultry system, they are generally more productive than those in the free range system. In addition to this, they are improved breeds of chicken.

The Intensive Poultry Production System

As the name suggests, this is a purely intensive system of poultry production. This is the system adopted in commercial poultry production. The breeds of chicken that make up the intensive system are improved breeds. Intensive poultry production consists of other sub-types such as the cage system, the litter system, and the slated system.

Brooding of Chickens

This is the care/rearing of chick right from the time of hatching to the stage where the chicken is more independent of its mother’s care. There are two main types of brooding. These are natural brooding and artificial brooding.

Natural Brooding

Natural brooding has to do with the natural process of hatching of eggs by a mother hen, which takes care of her chicks to maturity. The hen provides the heat needed by the chicks to keep warm and also guides them to feed. This system of brooding comes with its disadvantages, as it has a characteristically high mortality rate, plus there is a limit to the number of chicks that can be brooded at a time.

Artificial Brooding

This has to do with the artificial means of raising chicks without a mother hen. In this situation, a machine called an incubator is used for this process. An advantage of the artificial method is its high production rate, and low mortality rate.

Poultry Feed Formulation

Feed forms a substantial part of the expenses incurred on poultry farm business. This determines the profitability of the business. Chickens require adequate feeding, and the feed must contain the necessary minerals and vitamins necessary for proper growth, development, and production. Failure to meet this will result in stunted growth and malnutrition.

For layers, feed rich in calcium is necessary for quality egg production. These can be gotten from crushed eggshells and snails. The feed should also contain proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates, clean water, feed additives which enhance the growth of the birds.

Poultry House Construction

Because of the delicate nature of poultry farming, it requires that adequate preparations be made regarding the housing of the birds. Before building a poultry house, ensure that the house is not sited in a swampy area. It will do well that the area should be able to absorb water.

Also, the farm should be situated within an area that is easily accessible by road and should have all available amenities. The site for building the poultry farm should not be close to any residential area.

Feeding the Birds

The feeder and drinker should be well cleaned before using them for the chickens to avoid common diseases that may result. Several feeds and drinkers should be provided and well spaced out to avoid trampling which may result in mortality.

The Litter

For the litter system, it should be turned once a while to aerate and encourage proper decomposition with a reduced infection tendency to the birds.


Chickens should be properly vaccinated to avoid or prevent any diseases that may arise. The services of a veterinarian should be consulted for expert advice on the best times to vaccinate the birds and the symptoms to look out for to avoid high mortality in the birds.


Agrodynamix Nigeria understands the importance of managing health challenges in poultry farming business, so we are giving out a powerful e-book guide. This 85 pages powerful pictorial is recommended for a solid understanding of the causes, transmission, signs, prevention, and treatment of poultry diseases.


To benefit from this manual, send us a mail through the contact form on the top right corner of our blog using “Poultry Disease Manual” as the subject. Offer is for the first 50 people who contact us.
Here is a link to the contents of the Poultry Disease Manual 

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