There are several factors limiting the operation of poultry farm is various part of the world. The most prominent one is air pollution in terms of odor that emanates from the poultry farm. This is why most poultry farms are located in rural or less-populated area where the odor has less environmental effect and it is bearable in the neighborhood. A poultry farmer must find effective ways to control odor in poultry farm; this a contingent measure to ensure the continuity of the business as population grows. An urban society used to be a rural society.
The offensive odor that emanates from a poultry farm is natural; however, there are ways it can be controlled, thus, making poultry farm environmental friendly. The odor emanates as a result of neglected but not poor managerial practices. This farm odor is detrimental to both the health of the neighborhood and the poultry birds; it is one of the dangers of living near a chicken farm.
CAUSES AND SOURCES OF ODOR IN POULTRY FARMS.
There are several gases that lead to pungent odors in chicken farms; some of them are: Hydrogen Sulphide, which evolves from rotten eggs; Skatole from fecal odor; Thiocresol, which has a meaty type odor and Ammonia. The most offensive of all is Ammonia; it is corrosive and very irritating. It also harbors pathogen, which causes harmful poultry diseases.
Odor in poultry farm majorly comes from the feed, droppings and carcasses, the nature of the poultry house and the chickens. Odor can be detected by carrying out a “sniffing-test”; this will help determine the intensity of the odor. Poor gut performance and low digestibility also cause offensive odor in poultry production. When the gut of a poultry bird is bad, it leads to low feed digestibility. Poultry birds fail to fully utilize the nutrients present in the feed, hence, majority of the nutrients are passed out as waste.
Aggregate of undigested nutrients like: proteins and amino acids; in chicken waste leads to the emission of Amines and Ammonia to the environment. As seen in humans, poor digestibility causes intestinal disorder, high mortality in severe cases and conversely greater economic loss in a poultry farm.
WAYS TO CONTROL ODOR IN POULTRY FARM
The problem of offensive odor in chicken farm is natural but can be controlled; farm odor control needs a practical approach. If these ways can be adhere to, poultry enterprise can be situated in any part and environment around the world. These ways are:
- Use of Phytogenics: Phytogenics are feed additives in poultry made from plant materials; they can also serve as poultry odor eliminator. They help to improve the health of the guts, improve feed digestibility and nutrient utilization in chickens. They also improve overall performance of the chicken. Phytogenics are herbs, spices, non-volatile extracts and essential oil. They have other properties that are of great benefits to poultry keeping. Some of them are: antibacterial, antioxidant, antibiotics and anti-inflammatory. They are natural and have no detrimental effects on the chickens.
- Proper ventilation: Ventilation plays a very prominent role in poultry production. A poorly ventilated poultry house is a disease-prone house; the inflow and outflow of air in poultry house help to extract and disperse odor in the poultry house. According to the guide on building a modern poultry house, the longest side of the pen should face the direction of the wind. This will enable the birds receive even distribution of air and equally disperse odor. In a situation where the ventilation is observed to be inadequate, fans can be installed to enhance ventilation in the poultry house. It is an effective way of odor control from poultry facilities.
- Litter management: Litter materials are materials that serve as carpet in the poultry pen. Litter materials help to absorb moisture from the waste and also prevent waste from cementing the floor of the pen. When litter materials are poorly managed, they give room for ammonia buildup which produces a strong pungent odor in the farm. It a more severe case, the ammonia irritate the eye and skin of the poultry keeper. Litters have to be changed regularly at least every two weeks; this helps in farm odor control.
- Managing mortality: Most farmers remove dead flock from the live ones solely to reduce the spread of disease. Mortalities are always dumped in refuse bin or a spot in the farm designated for dirt; this is beneficial to the healthy flocks but detrimental to the health of the neighborhood. Mortalities should be buried under the soil and not abandoned on bare soil surface.
- Feed and drinking water: These two are very important to poultry enterprise. Before feeding, ensure you wipe out leftovers. Most farmers ignorantly pour leftover feed on the floor; this is not hygienic enough. Pour leftover feed in a dust bin and serve fresh feed. Stale water should be disposed before serving a fresh one. Do not leave the water for more than 12 hours.
- Managing stock density: A pen has its maximum and minimum capacity depending on the size of the pen. Do not overstock your pen; it increases the rate of waste accumulation and thereby leads to fervent emission of bad odor from the pen. Aside from erupting bad odor, it also leads to rapid spread of diseases.
Odor in poultry production is inherent but can be controlled to make the enterprise environmental compliance. It is one of the factors that have restricted poultry to the rural areas. Imagine the outcome of poultry enterprise in an urban area. It will greatly increase the profit of the business and also reduces cost of transportation.
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Source – Justagric