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Hatching Equipment in Poultry
Equipment & Innovations

Hatching Equipment in Poultry 

Egg hatching refers to the production of baby chicks. Farmers hatched eggs in the early days by placing them under hens. Desi hens have proven to be perfect for this function. A farmer can raise just 10 to 12 eggs under one hen. This method of hatching is not suitable for the large-scale development of baby chicks. Incubators, which provide a similar, but more effective environment to that of brooded hens, are currently used to hatch eggs.
With the increasing demand for poultry products, many people are stepping into hatchery farming.

Incubation

Physical factors important for efficient incubation are temperature, humidity, gaseous atmosphere, and egg rotation. The optimum and uniform temperature within the incubator is very critical to produce satisfactory performance. The temperature of the incubator should be controlled as recommended by the manufacturer.

It typically ranges from 99.5° to 100.5°F (37.2°C to 37.8°C) for forced draught incubators and approximately 1°F higher for still-air incubators. Low temperature delays the growth of the embryo and accelerates embryonic development more rapidly than the optimal temperature.
Humidity in the incubator affects the ability to hatch. Dry and wet bulb thermometers are used to measure humidity. The use of separate hatchers would improve hatchability. The use of a separate hatcher allows washing, disinfection, and fumigation without disrupting any other lot of eggs

Hatchery Management

At the beginning of the hatching season, the incubator and hatchers should be thoroughly tested for their efficiency and working. They should be thoroughly washed, disinfected, and fumigated to eliminate disease species before storage and transfer of eggs to the hatcher.

This decreases the incidence and spread of disease. Fumigation is typically performed with formaldehyde gas using 40 ml of 40 percent commercial formalin and 20 g potassium permanganate per 2·8 m3 of incubator or hatcher space. You may put potassium permanganate in a jar of glass or earthenware and the formalin may be poured over it.

Fumigation should ideally take place at the end of the working day and then the rooms should be locked. It is a good idea to start the incubator and hatcher at least 24 hours before setting the eggs to keep the temperature stable.
People working in the hatchery can use showers and change clothes and shoes before entering. Receipt of farm eggs and delivery of chicks should be away from each other to avoid infection.

Size of the hatchery

The size of the hatchery is based on

  • the egg capacity of the setters and hatchers
  • the number of eggs that can be set each week
  • the number of chicks hatched each week

Hatchery design

Hatchery should be built in such a way that the hatching eggs can be taken at one end and the chicks removed at the other. In other words, eggs and chicks should flow through the hatchery from one room to the next required in the hatching process. There should be no backtracking. Such a flow allows for greater separation of the spaces, and there is less human movement in the house.

Incubation equipment

Incubator

This is an instrument used for hatching eggs. Egg hatchery with an incubator can be described as a means of hatching eggs in an unnatural manner. These means can be used while there are a lot of eggs to be hatched.

Poultry Incubator Controller

The incubator controller for poultry is a machine used to monitor the incubator and timer. It indicates the temperature and humidity of the incubator.

Setter

It is a machine in which adequate temperature, humidity, and turning are provided for the first 19 days of incubating chicken eggs. An incubator is basically a machine that provides the optimum temperature and conditions for hatching.

Hatcher

It is similar to that of the setter, but there is no turning mechanism available and the trays are built to house the newly hatched chicks. The eggs are placed here for the last three days of incubation. Various types of setters and hatchers found around the world, including walk-in or corridor incubators, tunnel-type incubators, and vertical fan incubators.

Compressed air system

Some incubators require compressed air to operate the rotation mechanism for egg racks. A large central compressed air system is required for dust and dry-cleaning in the hatchery.

Emergency standby electric plants setter

In the case of a breakdown in the local electrical supply, the incubators must provide a secondar y source of electricity. It is, therefore, necessary to have an electrical backup generator located on-site, usually inside or next to the hatchery building. The standby electrical generator should have the capacity to support all necessary hatchery services.

Egg handling equipment

Hatching egg trays

Generally, hatching eggs are set in flats or bug-eye-type trays. The capacity of each tray is either 90 or 180 chicken eggs.

Hatching egg transfer machines

This is used to transfer the eggs from the breeder farm trays to hatcher trays. Vacuum egg lifts are usually employed in the hatcheries handling a large volume of eggs.
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