1) Meal-Time Feeding
Before meat poultry were kept intensively, birds were typically fed twice a day. Birds ate quickly to fill their crops where the feed soaked, swelled and softened and was pre-conditioned for several hours before the bulk of it entered the gizzard and the rest of the digestive system. This is the natural way that wild birds eat.
Normal ad-lib feeding, with feed in front of the birds all the time, is not natural and results in inactive crops, incomplete digestion and poorer feed efficiency. FLOCKMAN restores crop function and results in improved feed efficiency in birds fed using modern pan feeders. Feed is fed in several distinct feeds a day, with the
pans becoming empty for several hours before the next feed is due. This sharpens up the birds’ appetites and maintains good feed intake particularly in the last week of life. It also ensures that stale feed is never fed. With ad-lib feeding, birds often grow 5%-10% above breed targets in the first weeks, then lose appetite in the last week resulting in a fall off in % breed target. With FLOCKMAN, birds grow nearer to their breed target throughout life with acceleration towards the end.
4) Types of Lights in the house
FLOCKMAN can handle dimmable (tungsten, dimmable fluorescent and special dimmable LED) lights as well as non-dimmable (SL and non-dimmable fluorescent's). It can handle one or the other or both combined. It can interface with high frequency dimmers if these are already present.
The grower can select the dimming time (how long it takes from lights out to lights fully on). He can also adjust the maximum brightness in the house when the lights dim up to be fully on. This can be changed during the life of the flock if required. The FLOCKMAN Dawn/Dusk Dimmer will cope with up to 16 Amps.
5) Feed/Light Profiles
10 different Feed/Light profiles have been set up for growers to choose from. These vary in the number of feeds to be fed per day and the length of the dark periods. All profiles comply with the recommendation of FAWC in the UK, (Farm Animal Welfare Council). Six also fully comply with UK ACP (Assured Chicken Production) standards. However, the grower can set up his own Custom profiles if he wants to. 10 Custom Profiles can be set up and stored.
6) Feed used
FLOCKMAN works with the standard feed in use. This can be compound feed, with or without whole cereals mixed with it. If feed and whole cereal is in separate silos and mixed at the poultry house, it controls the % whole cereal fed, changing on a daily basis. It can also blend between high and low protein compound feeds. It can start with 100% Feed 1 on day 1, and move gradually to up to 100% Feed 2 later.
2) Number of feeds/day
We recommend pre-set Profiles, but the grower can select ad-lib feeding, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6 feeds a day if he or she wishes. They can try different ideas, before deciding on which suits them and their birds best.
3) Lighting Programmes
The system controls lights via a Dawn/Dusk dimmer and can change the daily light programme to give the required dark periods necessary to develop the birds’ immune defence system