Biosecurity Is Essential For Happy Hens’ Barnyard
The number one aspect of biosecurity is keeping our poultry houses free of rodents. For farmers, this is a fact of life. Rodents spread pests and bacteria through their feces, and we want to keep them out of our barns, buildings, and off our property. We purchase a specially designed rat bait box that has built-in safety measures for our farm animals and other welcome creatures like rabbits. However, this comes at great expense – $8 each. The varmint has to enter the box and stand-up to consume the bait. On the perimeter of the free range pasture is a bait box every 40-foot; likewise, they are placed along the inside and outside perimeter of each building because rodents feel safest at ground level on these perimeters. The lure has to be changed frequently as rodents can build up a tolerance to the bait
Next, we want to provide our animals biosecure grains. By choice, our feed is mixed for us only two days before delivery by a Mennonite company in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. This guarantees us the freshest, best quality product we could hope for our happy hens and ducks. This too comes with an extra cost, but the health of our animals and the quality of our product is most important. We have grains delivered to a stainless bin that stands 20 feet from the ground. This occurs roughly every two weeks keeping it from sitting around as 50lb bagged food sits in a warehouse. Sadly, most free range farms purchase bag feed, which could have been sitting around in a warehouse for an immeasurable amount of time inviting pests to munch on the feed and leave their feces in the chicken food. Moreover, temperature changes in the building can cause molds to grow in the feed. Then, this lends itself to serious illness for chicken flocks.
Farming must be a love of the animals first. Everything else falls into place because Healthy, Happy Hens are Eggstraspecial!
Keep watching for more posts on our Biosecurity Methods used around the farm.
Talk to you soon.