It’s officially the final day for our poultry farm practical in Karak, and man it was good. We started off waking up at 5 am in the morning to get prepared for the entrance into the breeder farm. With biosecurity as the first priority in the farm manual, all 6 of us had to strip naked for sanitary shower with clothes prepared by the farm.
Going around the breeder farm basically focused on only few matters including the feed, the water, the temperature, getting the eggs as well as checking the chickens’ soundness. The breed used in this farm is Ross, with a better soundness for handling. The feed was fed as taught in the lectures, so as the males and females get equally distributed feed to ensure balanced growth for optimal libido and fertilized eggs production to be sent to the hatchery for hatching in the 3rd day.
Temperature and the drinker was properly maintained, the atmosphere in each house was pretty cooling even though the cooling pads weren’t functioning, even more when we entered the house early in the morning at 5am.
The best part of the practical in today’s visit: Egg harvesting. Gosh it was like living my virtual dream of owning my farm in Harvest Moon! I get to pick eggs up from different nests situated in the farm, and observing how the hens were trying to incubate those eggs. The eggs laid before 5am were quite cold while the newly hatched eggs were really warm, like a boiled egg left for 10 minutes. The feeling picking up the eggs from the nest, and digging through the hens’ chests was really refreshing, and I was indeed living my dream as a farm trainee. I never had the wildest dream of living my life in the farm with a veterinarian degree, but thank goodness I’ve managed to make it here today.
The eggs were differentiated from each house by the colored trays to be sent ultimately to the hatchery; collected 5 times per day to prevent over 30% of eggs collection in one collection. This is to make sure each collection is made before pathogenic infections or damaged by the chickens running around each house. We managed to retrieve and culled a few hens for their soundness doesn’t seem too promising. The comb was regressing, while the space between its sternum to its pelvic bone was less than 3 fingers wide. We had to perform a post-mortem on it, looking into its reproductive organ to see the defect. Apparently its ovaries began to regress, causing no egg production.
Overall, I’m pretty sure I’d love to work in farms, but I’m still not too sure about working in JUST a poultry farm. A barn with a dairy farm, with some bees and wine vineyard would just be perfect. I’m probably dreaming now, with Malaysia’s weather this doesn’t seem that all practical.