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Chicken care with water supplements: What you need to keep in mind.

Chicken care with water supplements: What you need to keep in mind.

Water is indisputably the most relevant feed for successful poultry production. Its quality needs to be high to assure the wellbeing and high performance of our animals. Industrial farming aims at being efficient and sustainable while meeting the exacting needs of modern breeds. The application of water-soluble supplements via the drinking water is a fast and flexible tool in supporting these needs, especially during periods of intense growth or in stress situations. With the choice of suitable supplements and correct administration, positive effects on gut health and immunity can be achieved. For successful water application, there are some things you need to keep in mind.

From the first drop of water…

The watering system is designed to provide fresh, clean water. It is also a great tool in administering veterinary treatments, such as vaccines or necessary medications. The application of dietary feed supplements via water can also be advantageous

  • in phases of increased demand. During intense growth periods of modern breeds the demand for certain nutrients, such as minerals and vitamins for bone strength, may not be covered by feed alone. This gap in provision can be closed by adequate water supplementation.
  • in phases of reduced feed intake. During illness or stress the feed intake may quickly become reduced, while the water consumption remains steady or even increases. Sick animals will stop feeding first while water intake remains unchanged.
  • in phases of challenge situations, during recuperation or as supportive measures.

General criteria for water application

Administering dietary supplements via drinking water is thus becoming more relevant. While it is already common practice for poultry livestock, it is gaining importance also for swine and cattle. Substances such as medication, prescribed by a veterinarian, are by far not the only ones applied via water. A wide range of nutritive additives is available for water application. This bears a range of benefits:

  • The use of additives in the water allows for full control over their use through the farm manager. The type, dosage and duration can be adjusted to best meet the requirements of the animals.
  • The application takes place quickly and the additives are available to the animals almost immediately. Supplementation via feed takes longer: it must first be ordered at the feed mill, manufactured and delivered. This time cannot always be afforded.
  • When sick, animals may still be medicated and supplied via the drinking water

Preparations, contents and formulations

A variety of dosage forms is available on the market for water application, ranging from effervescent tablets to highly concentrated liquids. The most commonly used forms are liquids and water-soluble powders. Products of high quality should not leave any residue, oily films or sediments in the watering system.

Suitable are all ingredients that are water-soluble or can be transferred into such a form, for example through the emulsification of fats and oils. The spectrum ranges from essential nutrients such as vitamins and trace elements, to electrolytes, amino acids, essential oils and specialties like pro- and prebiotics.

For a wide range of indications

The options for combining active ingredients are numerous and allow for a targeted support for the different phases of poultry farming. In recent times the use of supplements is gaining importance in regards to the necessity of antibiotic reduction and governmental monitoring programs. Veterinarians and animal nutritionists are working together closely for product development. With appropriate use, the nutritional benefits of these combinations might be able to reduce the frequency of antibiotic treatment by positively affecting digestive functions or preventing malnourishment.

The line-up of Biochem products for water application covers a wide range of indications. We offer products containing smart combinations of ingredients, each designed to best meet the needs of your animals, in all phases of life.

Through constant research and testing we keep our products optimized according to newest developments in science and genetic advancement of the different breeds.

With state-of-the-art production processes and high standards of quality management, Biochem products are delivered in a consistently high quality and are available as liquids or water-soluble powders.

Crucial: water hygiene

Even though the drinking water application has a variety of advantages, there are also some things that need to be considered to keep this application method safe and efficient:

A good watering system needs to be well thought-through

The physical parameters of any watering system are decisive for the continuous supply with fresh water. Is the pipe diameter adequate for the water volumes that need to pass per minute, even in times of maximum water consumption? Or can the system not accommodate the high flow rate, so that...

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Timo Stiebeling

Timo Stiebeling

Head of Marketing, Biochem Zusatzstoffe Handels- und Produktionsges. mbH View all posts of Timo

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