Pick your Poults
- Calculate the date for your poult's
arrival based on the date of your fair.
- You will need several poults to cull from to have a good choice at fair time. A good start would be 5 - 10 poults. If you are showing a pen, you will need more.
- Select a breed and order the desired number of poults from poultry breeder or hatchery. Find a hatchery.
Prepare Brooder/House for Poults
- To ensure health and to keep disease to a minimum, don’t raise turkeys with chickens or in the same grounds that chickens have been within the last three years.
- Confine poults to brooder. Brooder should have minimum 18 inch sides to keep drafts down.
- Cover brooder floor with pine shavings, 4 inch base is recommended.
- Temperature should be kept at 92 to 95 F at floor level for first week. Provide two red heat lamp per 50 poults. Use two lamps in case one burns out.
- Provide one liner inch per poult at the feeder thru week six. From week six till show provide three linear inches per poult at feeder. Use smaller feeders on younger poults and switch to larger feeders as poults grow to avoid feed wastage. As poults grow raise feeders so poults have to stand to eat.
- Provide half a linear inch of space per poult at waterer for six first weeks; water should be 80 F for first three days. From week six to fourteen provide one linear inches per poult at the waterer. From week fourteen to show provide one and a half linear inches per poult at waterer.
- Clean and disinfect feeders and waterers regularly.
- Keep lights on 24 hrs. a day for first three days, then reduce to normal or continue with continues lighting for toms. For hens 24 hrs lighting for first three days then reduce to normal day length at week 10-12. Reduce time gradually. A 40 watt or equivalent bulb will work. Stimulate birds to eat by shaking feeders when checking on birds several times per day.
- Keep fresh air available, but avoid cold drafts in brooder. Too hot or cold air will affect poult performance. Monitor birds for comfort, if birds are huddled together they may be too cold. If they are spread out against the walls panting, the temperature is too hot. Poults should be spread out in the brooder eating, drinking and sleeping if they are comfortable.
- Before poults arrive day before set up brooder and turn on heat and heat lamps and adjust lamp based on temperature.