Poultry farming is growing in popularity among commercial, small as well as backyard farmers alike. The growth of the industry places a pressure on farmers to produce increased yields of superior quality. With this demand comes the need to prolong the life expectancy of livestock in order to reach maximum productivity, hence increased profits. This situation is also applicable to farmers who keep Jersey Giant chickens. However, the pressure to improve Jersey Giant chicken lifespan is exacerbated by their slow growth rate and high capital investments. Farmers cannot afford to neglect animal health as it can lead to decreased profits and even loss. As such, in order to improve the life span of Jersey Giant chickens, it is of the utmost importance to acquire the necessary knowledge and skillset about poultry management. Similar to all living species, the Jersey Giant chicken lifespan is primarily dependent on genetics. Large breeds of poultry generally have a shorter lifespan compared to medium sized breeds. Since Jersey Giant breeds have a large physical appearance, they also have a shorter lifespan. Jersey Giant Chicken Lifespan is approximately 6 years, though it can vary slightly depending on animal care.
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Some farmers still practise traditional farming methods which do not avail appropriate housing facilities for chickens. They keep various breeds under the same coop run. A downside of adopting this farming system is that livestock tend to be overcrowded resulting in the manifestation of diseases and parasites. The Jersey Giant Chicken lifespan is rapidly shortened under such conditions. The recommended housing facility should be properly aerated allowing adequate air circulation. This is done to protect livestock from respiratory infections and other diseases that can occur due to dust and dander. Although Jersey Giant breed are quite large, they can be attacked by predators like cats and dogs. For this reason, farmers should make sure that predators do not have access to the housing facility. An ideal coop run can be achieved by slightly raising it from the ground to a height that is off the reach of predators. Furthermore, it is also important to provide a facility that is suitable for the climatic environment. Severe weather conditions lead to a reduced lifespan of Jersey Giant chicken thereby reducing the profitability of the farming venture. The following are some shelter considerations necessary for a prolonged Jersey Giant chicken lifespan:
- making the latch to their enclosure high off the ground and hard to open
- liberal use of chicken wire
- be vigilant for holes that appear in the fencing
- keep the coop closed at night
The environment influences the wellbeing and health of chickens. It is closely linked to the housing system. Diseases usually occur in housing systems with poor hygiene. The lifespan of the Jersey Giant chicken is therefore most likely to improve in a clean warm environment. The opposite is accurate for birds that are kept in dirty places where diseases are rampant. In order for the Jersey Giant lifespan to improve, the living environment must have appropriate temperatures. Jersey Giants favour low weather temperatures and so farmers in warm areas should make sure they are kept in a well-insulated place. In addition, they should be kept in a spacious environment to avoid overcrowding which is often the cause of the spread of diseases. A spacious area also avails an opportunity for exercise which is advisable by most veterinary medical practitioners.
Diseases and Parasites
The common causes of short Jersey Giant chicken lifespan are partly due to diseases and parasite manifestation. Similar to most chicken breeds, Jersey Giants are susceptible to a number of diseases including Marek’s disease which is a highly infectious herpes infection. Additives in food, particularly those that bolster the immune system, can go a long way toward protecting chickens from disease. As such, farmers must make sure that the flock is vaccinated timeously. While some infections caused by parasites like mites and ticks can result in skin deep irritations, others can seriously curtail a chicken’s life. Parasites can therefore adversely affect the Jersey Giant chicken lifespan. Mites suck blood causing discomfort and anaemia; lice can cause skin irritation and feather damage. Under extreme conditions, worms can significantly reduce the Jersey Giant chicken lifespan. Other common diseases include Coccidiosis. This disease spreads quickly targeting the chicken’s gut. It ravages those intestinal cells to the point of extreme appetite loss and an inability to absorb nutrients. In order to protect livestock from these diseases, farmers must conduct regular check-ups for any symptoms. Keeping lievestock parasite-free is essential in improving the life span of the Jersey Giant chicken.
A well balanced diet is essential in protecting and strengthening the immune system thereby giving the body some form of resistance against diseases. For this reason, it is highly recommended to provide chicken with a balanced nutritious feed. Poultry feed should have the following nutrients, carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins and minerals including trace elements. Feed for Jersey Giants chicken is often regarded as a secondary issue due to their excellent foraging ability. As such, farmers that practice poultry farming should note that poor feed results in poor immune systems and sickly animals which decreases the Jersey Giant chicken lifespan. Trace minerals are often ignored as consequences take time to manifest. Shortage of trace nutrients also causes poor animal health thereby leaving chickens open to attack by numerous diseases. The result is limited Jersey Giant chicken lifespan. Another threat to the lifespan of Jersey Giant chicken is over and underfeeding. Overweight Jersey Giants are prone to health issues such as leg and back problems, heart problems and respiratory issues. For this reason, feed should be provided in appropriate amounts with treats given in moderation. As a means to ensure long Jersey Giant lifespan, exercise should be encouraged.
Farmers should make sure that chickens are in perfect health at all times. This is important in improving the Jersey Giant chicken lifespan. It is advisable to check animals for any health problems weekly, hence the need to have knowledge about common diseases that attack animals. Minor things can usually be handled at home before they become larger problems that require more extensive care from a veterinarian. For farmers with the financial capacity, a veterinary doctor can be consulted regularly. Appropriate medication must be administered as soon as the symptoms appear. Take care to isolate the ill birds as they spread the diseases to across the flock.