Force moulting and bio-security: effective techniques for continuous protein intake and poultry disease control in developing countries.
AbstractThe low level of protein intake in developing countries is of great concern as it affects physical and intellectual development as well as immunity against diseases. But the potential of the egg industry in reversing inadequate protein intake had been recognized as laying birds contribute substantially to annual egg and meat production which assist in the maintenance of protein consumption especially by poor families. This noble opportunity for obtaining ‘cheap’ protein had been faced with several challenges including the natural moulting of birds and frequent outbreak
of diseases in poultry farms in developing countries. Moulting usually result in the shedding of the birds feathers and drastic reduction in egg production and quality. The frequent outbreak of diseases in most farms in developing countries had constantly resulted in reduced productivity, higher cost of egg and poultry meat, partial or total lost of investment and general reduction of protein consumption. Of major concern are the high percentage of culled layers after first year laying and the re-occurrence of the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) which need urgent solution to avert the total collapse of the egg industry whose eggs and meat are normally rejected during such outbreaks. This review therefore concluded and recommended that since force-moulting is a natural phenomenon
which must occur, an established technique such as force-moulting should be practiced by all poultry farmers, especially in developing countries as this will sustain productivity, reduce cost of production, lower cost of eggs and meat and subsequently increase animal protein intake. An adequate and conscious bio-security plan for poultry farmers will reduce the incidence of diseases, increase productivity of the industry and eventually reduce poverty.