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HOUSING FOR POULTRY
Open-sided poultry houses are very popular in our country. Except where the temperature is exceptionally low open-sided houses work very satisfactorily and are also preferred for economic reasons. The primary objective of providing housing to poultry is to protect them from sun, rain and predators. Housing is also essential to provide comfort. Poultry houses should be-well ventilated, reasonably cool in summer and warm during winter, and free from drafts. In hotter parts of the country, the long axis of the house should run from east to west and the sides should face north-south to prevent direct sunshine falling into the house. In colder parts of the country it is desirable to construct the houses facing south or south-east to get maximum sunlight. The distance between two houses for birds of same age group should be at least 18 m to allow proper ventilation.But the young stock house should be at least 45 to 100 m away from the houses having adult stocks to prevent diseases. To avoid ventilation problem the width of the house should not exceed 9 m in open-sided houses. The height of the house depends upon temperature of the place. Ordinarily the height of the house should be 2·4 to 3 m from the foundation to roof line. When height is more it helps to reduce the inside temperature.
A poultry house should not be expensive. Durability, comfort and safety of house, however, should not be sacrificed. The floor of the house should be moisture-proof, free from cracks, easily cleaned, rat proof and durable. The different types of floor in use are all-litter floor, all-slate floor, slate and litter floor, wire and litter floor, and sloping wire floor. The walls and partitions must be solid enough to support the roof and withstand heavy winds. Wide variation is possible depending upon agro climatic conditions, availability and cost of construction materials. The roof must be draft and moisture proof. Insulation of roof helps both in summer as well as in winter. Where summer temperature is high roof should be painted with a reflecting type of paint such as aluminium paint. An over-hang of 0·9 m will help to prevent the rain water splashing inside the house. The climatic conditions and age group of birds will determine the extent of side opening. Usually half to two-thirds area of the side walls are kept open in open-sided house fitted with wire mesh. In areas where temperature is high and continuous, more than two-thirds of the side wall area may be left open for proper ventilation. In brooder houses half the area is left open, in grower and layer houses two-thirds and in cage houses the maximum. Irrespective of the house, all the Poultry houses should be located in well-drained grounds, safe from flood waters and with easy access from the road.
The following are the desirable points to be borne in mind while selecting a location.
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