Before you call upon the labor of a poultry farm, it is imperative that you understand the aspects that are involved in how a yard is run. Raising barnyard fowl is more than just watching an egg incubate and feeding the resultant chick until it is ready to eat or produce breakfast. To ensure that you conduct good business with the farmers, be prepared to learn much about their trade. Below are four terms which should be learned before purchasing bird for consumption.
Free Range - A practice that allows farmers to cultivate chickens and ducks in open-air environments with only coops for shelter. Since neither species can fly, this arrangement allows them to live as naturally as possible. Produce provided from such animals are considered of higher quality.
Coop - A structure in which chickens can find protection from weather effects and predators. Depending on the disposition of the owners, these can be open-air or closed.
Factory Farming - A manner of poultry husbandry, this method rears barnyard fowl in cages to provide large volumes of produce on small parcels of land. This has been controversial due to the confining conditions that the animals are subjected to.
Hatchery - An area where newborn chicks or turkey poults are incubated in high quantities. A hatchery is run mainly to provide factory farms with meat-providing fowl, although egg-producers are also hatched. Such facilities must guard against communicable diseases as they nourish the hatchlings to a state where they can be transferred.
In the agriculture world, poultry farms are a popular way to make money. Some people have poultry farms where they breed chickens to lay eggs. Other farmers may raise chicken and other birds for their meat. Sales of both meat and eggs can be very profitable.
A farmer who is looking to sell eggs needs to have an advanced hatchery. It is very important to incubate eggs properly. When it is time to incubate the eggs, the temperature in the hatchery needs to be at least 99.5 degrees Fahrenheit, but can not go over 103 degrees.
Some farmers choose to keep their flock of chickens in a coop. Chickens who live in a coop will nest, lay eggs and do just about everything in their special box. The other option farmers have is to raise free range poultry. Free range birds usually can run around the farm. One drawback is that farmers will have to search for egg nests.
Chickens are not the only bird that you will find running around a free range farm. Many also have turkey, roosters, hens, ducks and pheasant.
Some farmers raise their chicken so that the meat can be sold as organic. Organic chickens are fed better food, afforded more room in their cage, and are given no hormones. The organic market continues to grow. Some families will only allow organic meat and eggs to come into their houses. Many believe raising poultry organic benefits both the animals and the people who consume the animals and their eggs. Organic chicken is often broiled instead of fried.