Optimal lighting is very critical to successful and profitable layer poultry farming in the Philippine. Here are some best practices that you can incorporate in order to achieve optimal lighting when it comes to layer farming in the Philippines:-
- Ensure that the light bulbs that you are using are clean in order to avoid a loss in light intensity. As we have seen, a slight variation of the light intensity out of range of the optimal light intensity could easily lead to a lowering in the egg production or laying rate of the chickens.
- The lighting should be positioned in such a way that the bright and the dark spots in the poultry house are minimized.
- Try to avoid white or shiny surfaces in the poultry house as these are likely to reflect light leading to an increase in the light intensity beyond the optimal requirement.
- When adding lighting and light intensity, you must put the local conditions into consideration. There are cases where you may need to adapt the lighting requirement. This is especially the case in the open sided poultry houses in the Philippines where there access to natural lighting during the day.
- When transferring the chickens to the laying house, make sure that you have matched the lighting intensity and light hours of both the rearing house and the laying house.
- Lighting stimulation should be commenced when your flock hits the 17-week body weight. That will be somewhere close to the 1.5Kg body weight. In case the flock is underweight based on the expected production characteristics of the chickens that you are planning to rear, then you can delay the lighting stimulation. You can also delay the lighting stimulation if the chickens have poor uniformity.
- Extend the duration of light stimulation into the peaking period. At about 30 weeks, you need to achieve 16 hours of light for the poultry.
- Alternate the light height so as to enhance the distribution of light throughout the poultry cage.
- In the first 12 weeks, there should be a gradual step down of lighting or LUX in order to prevent early sexual maturity of the birds. The flock is transferred to the laying house at week 16 and the lighting stimulation begins at week 17.