The first blow is half the battle
The time between housing and peak egg production is the most demanding and stressful period in the laying hens life. During this period she is not only adjusting to her new environment, she must consume enough energy and nutrients to finalize the growth and reach a high peak in egg production. Good nutrition and minimizing stress are important management strategies to optimize the start of production. If the flock is doing well during the first 30 weeks, it is quite usual to refrain from problems during the rest of the laying period.
Figure 1 shows the different organ systems development over the first 35 weeks of the hens life. Skeleton and framework of the hens are demanding most energy during the first 10 weeks of her live. During this period feed quality like amino acid composition needs to be tightly adapted to the nutritional requirements of the developing hen. The sexual organs have their most pronounced development during the pre-laying period, week 17-19. This is also the most stressful period where they move from the rearing to the production location and where changes in feed, hormonal and other management strategies take place.
Figure 1: Physical development of laying hens.
(Source: Poultry signals, Roodbond uitgeverij)
Drink water is an very useful medium to provide additional nutrients during the period towards peak production. Kanters has developed a water additive called Pro-Mac® with a high nutritional value. Pro-Mac® is a combination of amino acids, organic fatty acids, minerals (Cu, Mg, Ca, Mn, I, Zn, Co, Se), glucose, inuline, vitamin B-complex and Ginceng, Maca and Echinacea. Hens which are supplemented with 2 weeks of Pro-Mac® between week 17 and 18 have shown to perform better post peak laying period in comparison to a control group which did not receive Pro-Mac® (figure 2).
Besides being a source of nutrients, Pro-Mac® also acidifies the drinking water. The combination of formic-, lactic-, acetic-, citric- and sorbic acid have a synergistic effect in the gastro-intestinal tract, supporting protein digestion. Together with the prebiotic Inuline, beneficial bacteria in the intestines are supported.
While Pro-Mac® is a very nutritional rich product to add into the drinking lines, the water microbiological quality is maintained because of the pH lowering effect of Pro-Mac®. None the less we advise to make sure drinking lines are cleaned before and after using Pro-Mac®. The most efficient and safe method for doing this is to use Aqua-clean®.
Would you like to know more about Pro-Mac®? Visit the productpage of Pro-Mac®
or contact us by phone +31 (0)499- 425 600. You can also send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.