Friday, October 30, 2020

Benefits of VPN


After installing a Virtual Private Network(VPN) on our farm PC, the number of invasive pop-up ads has been cut substantially when surfing the net. My location shows up as Moldova (Romania) rather than Australia.

A minor issue is that I need to switch off VPN when accessing Facebook, editing the farm blog or website. We are using Avira Phantom VPN Pro.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

An end to culling male chicks


We have asked the Federal Government if it plans to encourage chicken hatcheries in this country to adopt new developments in egg-sexing technology which will end the hatching and culling of male layer chicks. With millions of male chicks culled here every year, the adoption of egg-sexing technologies will not only address ethical concerns, but also save producers significant resources. In-ovo sexing technology is freely available to hatcheries. It offers major cost savings for hatcheries and addresses welfare concerns. France and Germany have undertaken to ban culling unwanted male chicks by the end of 2021, as part of animal welfare reforms.  It is hoped that Chicken hatcheries throughout Australia will soon end the practice of euthanising day old male chicks, removing one of the key objections to poultry farms by animal activist groups.

The Canadian industry body,, Egg Farmers of Ontario  has a process which it says can determine the sex of a chick before eggs are incubated. German scientists have also developed a process to identify embryos.

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

Coronaviris in chickens


Covid 19 is just one Coronavirus. It’s in the news as it happens to be one that infects humans but there are many others, just as virulent, which can be contracted by animals. Dr. Mark Jackwood is a molecular virologist at the University of Georgia. His primary area of research is the study of avian coronaviruses. Specifically, he works with infectious bronchitis  a virus that causes upper-respiratory disease in chickens Dr. Jackwood’s work involves the use of molecular techniques for the identification, characterization, and control of the virus. He is regarded as one of the leading experts in his field. Thankfully a vaccine was developed some years ago and is widely used to protect poultry. Anyone buying poultry should ensure that the birds have been vaccinated against Infectious Bronchitis as well as Mareks Disease, Newcastle Disease, Infectious Laryo Tracheitis, Avian Encaphaomyalitis, Egg Drop Syndrome and Fowl Pox. With quality food, clean water and good animal husbandry, the birds should live long and productive lives. They will be at risk when kept in overcrowded conditions with little or no outdoor access and adequate sunlight.

Thursday, October 01, 2020

Setting up a farm as a lifestyle and business opportunity


Clear consumer demand for free range eggs has generated a strong increase in the number of people thinking about starting their own free range egg business.

A good starting point is reading the eBook on starting a free range farm available on the Freeranger Eggs website Detailed information is available on the Freeranger Club downloads page about things like shed requirements, food safety, egg packaging and labelling.

When deciding to set up a free range egg farm, take the time to plan it properly. Find out the zoning of the land and talk to your local Council planning department about their requirements. It’s also worth contacting the State Department of Agriculture. You can find on-line resources in most states. Once that is sorted, talk to your Council Environmental Health Department about any specific requirements they have before you get underway.