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High temperatures affect poultry production

by Staff reporter
11 Nov 2021 at 06:20hrs | Views
The high temperatures felt throughout the country have been killing chickens in many backyard fowl runs in rural and urban areas.

Many people have over the years started rearing broiler chickens for sale as a source of regular income.

Midlands Veterinary Provincial Director Dr Martin Sibanda said improper housing of the birds sees some farmers losing out in the event of unfavourable weather conditions, especially heat. "Climatic factors may cause production losses in broiler production," he said. "Many of these losses are caused by heat waves because they do not tolerate temperatures above 32 degrees which increase broiler mortality and reduce their productive performance."

Dr Sibanda warned farmers to minimise period of collection of birds from the centres to the final place where they are kept to minimise chances of dehydration that will lead to most of them dying.

"I advise farmers to collect chickens early morning because temperatures which we are experiencing nowadays are not favourable for broilers," he said.

Members of the public have also been urged to stay indoors and hydrated all the time to avoid health complications during heatwaves A heat wave is a period of excessively hot weather, which may be accompanied by high humidity, and can range from 28 degrees Celsius.

A heatwave can burden health and emergency services and also increase strain on water, energy and transportation resulting in power shortages or even blackouts. Food and livelihood security may also be strained if people lose their crops or livestock due to extreme heat. It also compromises the body's ability to regulate temperature and can result in a cascade of illnesses, including heat cramps, heat exhaustion, heatstroke, and hyperthermia.

Source - The Herald