It’s exciting to get a new flock in your possession and it’s a rewarding task yet it is one that needs to be practised with good basic house-keeping, routine and hygiene practices. Tuckers Pet & Produce realises how essential it is to not only keep your hens happy but also healthy! Here are some steps from poultry experts Barastoc in order to assist you with maximising your hens happiness and their health with tasks broken up in different time periods.
Check that there is sufficient cool, fresh, clean water available.
Top up the feeder. Chickens should have enough food to eat when they need to.
Give your chickens a visual check over to make sure they look lively and have no obvious signs that would indicate a health problem.
Collect eggs twice a day and put them straight in the fridge! This will maximise their freshness and help avoid broodiness and egg eating in your flock.
Clean out dirty nests and any droppings in the hen house. This is essential to minimise the risk of disease and fly problems. If you’re going to use the manure on your garden, make sure you let it mellow in a composter first.
Remove damp litter or soil and replace it with clean, new material which will significantly reduce the risk of nasties like coccidiosis.
Check over the hen house to make sure there are no new gaps or faulty latches which might allow predators in at night.
Check for signs of rats or other pests.
Move the run to a new place to ensure their grazing area remains fresh.
Deter mites and lice by painting perches with a mix of lime and water.
Thoroughly clean out and sanitise nest boxes.
Fix up leaky drinkers or taps. Damp conditions promote the build-up of internal parasites in the flock.
Dust chickens with a powder that kills lice and mites. e,g. Pestene powder.
Before introducing new birds to the hen house, all old litter material should be removed and the house should be washed down with a detergent.
You should also sanitise it with an approved sanitiser for poultry houses. Ideally, to control external parasites and litter beetles, the house should also be treated with an approved insecticide.
Tuckers Pet & Produce stores hold a large range of poultry health products to optimise the health of your chook. Tuckers Pet & Produce also encourages people to learn how to properly look after your chooks environment including nutritional feed, important hygiene, quality nesting boxes and more. Pop into your local Tuckers store today or shop online at www.tuckersstore.com.au