Department of Agriculture - Turkeys and Turkey Breeders - Management.

Published: 2011-09-29

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(A) The responsible party must catch, lift and move poultry humanely.

(B) Except for paragraph (C) of rule 901:12-3-05 of the Administrative Code, birds can be caught or carried by one or both legs, and are not to be carried or lifted by the head, neck or tail.

(C) The following livestock management procedures are acceptable to minimize injury to the birds and, if performed, must be performed in a humane manner:

(1) Beak conditioning;

(2) Toenail conditioning;

(3) Dewclaw conditioning;

(4) Snood conditioning; and,

(5) Induced molting, which must also meet all of the following conditions:

(a) Must use only non-feed withdrawal methods;

(b) Turkey breeders must be fed a maintenance ration for non-producing breeders;

(c) The light period must be reduced to no fewer than six hours in closed houses, or to natural day length in open houses, for the duration of the rest period. When the flock is placed back on a production diet, lights should be returned to the normal program; and,

(d) During molt, flock health, mortality and bird weight must be monitored;

(D) Environmental management must be designed to control rodents, non-beneficial insects, and parasite infestation in the birds, as it applies to the flocks housing system.

(E) Housing for turkey and turkey breeders must meet all of the following conditions:

(1) Must provide a clean and safe environment that promotes the health, welfare and performance of turkeys/turkey breeders at all stages of their lives;

(2) Bedding, if provided, must be of a good quality and absorbent;

(3) Environmental moisture must be managed, whether birds are housed indoors or outdoors, to promote flock health and welfare; and,

(4) Stocking densities must allow all turkeys to rest at the same time without being forced to rest on each other at all stages of production, and in addition all turkeys must be able to access feed and water without excessive competition that prevents individuals in the flock from maintaining normal body condition; and,

(5) Housing must be designed in a manner which;

(a) Seeks to minimize the effects of adverse weather conditions;

(b) Seeks to minimize conditions in which the bird cannot effectively thermo-regulate;

(c) Provides sufficient ventilation to reduce concentrations of carbon monoxide, ammonia and dust; and,

(d) Provides backup systems in working condition, in houses/barns that require mechanized ventilation;

(6) Light intensity must be adequate for observation during inspection;

(7) If natural light is not available, artificial light must be provided for rearing and production; and,

(8) Free-range/pastured turkeys must be provided reasonable protection from adverse weather conditions and predators.

(F) Turkey breeder housing must meet the following conditions:

(1) Introduction of new turkeys must be done in a manner which seeks to minimize aggression and the risk of injury;

(2) If nest space is provided, they must be cleaned as necessary to ensure that manure does not accumulate.