- white plumage, some individuals may also have dark feathers on their chests,
- developed wing and tail plumage,
- vertically set oval body,
- strong wide chest
- wide pink sturdy legs
- bare neck and head, the color of bare skin is bright red,
- on the head and neck there are characteristic fleshy growths (the so-called "corals").
An adult turkey looks much larger and stronger than turkeys, and also has a greater body weight. The male plumage (primarily tail) is more developed than the female. From the top of the turkey's beak, a fleshy appendage is hung in bright red color, increasing in size during periods of bird excitation.
The main feature of this breed is in high rates of weight gain with a significant slowdown in growth and weight gain in individuals who have reached six months of age. Often it is upon reaching the specified age that the young are slaughtered.
Depending on weight and size, white wide-breasted turkeys are classified into three categories:
- Easy. The weight of an adult male does not exceed 9 kg, females - 5 kg. First of all, this category is grown on poultry farms on an industrial scale.
- Average. The weight of an adult turkey reaches 17 kg, turkeys - 7 kg. It is grown both on an industrial scale and in private households.
- Heavy. Male weight may exceed 25 kg, females - 11 kg. On average, young stock reaches a mass of 11 kg by the age of six months.
White wide-breasted turkeys are very docile and in most cases not aggressive. The turkeys make good chickens, and chicks of other poultry are often brought to them for nursing. At the same time, during the periods of mating, turkeys may show aggression, at this time they are recommended to be kept separately from turkeys and young animals.
White wide-breasted turkeys love long walks in the fresh air. The content in the cages is extremely undesirable, the lack of space affects the condition of the birds in a very negative way. The optimal ratio of males and females in the flock is 1 to 5, respectively.
Egg production rates
First of all, white-breasted turkeys are meat breed, however, egg-laying indicators are also relatively good. The turkeys begin to fly from the age of nine months, during the season one female can carry about 120 eggs, while the weight of one egg is at least 85 g. Also in some eggs there are two yolks at the same time. The average oviparous period lasts from six to nine months. White wide-chested turkey eggs are great for artificial incubation, chicks hatch from three-quarters of eggs laid in an incubator.
Features breeding and growing at home
White wide-breasted turkeys are able to produce up to twenty eggs. At the same time hens care for turkey poults until they gain complete independence. On average, the incubation period lasts for a month. The main disadvantage of the natural method of breeding offspring is that the turkey can damage the eggs or injure the newborn chicks. To minimize such risks when breeding offspring, it is advisable to use an incubator.
Procedure for artificial incubation
Eggs should be carefully sorted before laying in the incubator - there should be no growths, roughness or other defects on the shell surface. You should choose medium-sized, evenly painted eggs of the correct geometric shape. In addition, an internal inspection of the selected eggs should be carried out by ovoscoping (scanning the eggs with a directional beam of light): the yolk should be in the center, as the egg changes its position, it should not move much. You should also reject eggs with two yolks.
Eggs for incubation should be stored at 12 ° C and 80% humidity in a dry, clean place. Shelf life - no more than ten days. Eggs should be placed with a blunt end up, with every four days they should be turned over. Immediately before laying in the incubator, the eggs should be heated to a temperature of 20 ° C. This measure will allow to avoid the uneven development of embryos due to the formation of condensate on the walls of the shells during the laying.
Procedure for artificial incubation:
- Disinfection of eggs and incubator. A solution of potassium permanganate, preheated to 39 ° C, is used as a disinfectant. Exceeding the specified temperature can kill the germ.
- Egg laying. The bookmark is made vertically if the incubator has an automatic turning mode. Otherwise, the eggs are laid horizontally and marked.
- Temperature and humidity during the first two weeks: 38 ° C and 75%, respectively. Turn eggs should be up to 12 times during the day. After the first week, the eggs should be re-checked with an ovoscope to identify dead embryos and unfertilized eggs.
- Temperature and humidity during the third week: 37.5 ° C and 50%, respectively. Turn the eggs should also be up to 12 times during the day. This mode lasts up to 25-26 days of incubation, right up to the beginning of a nakleva.
- Temperature and humidity at naklev, 37 ° C and 70%, respectively. In this case, you should stop turning the eggs. As a rule, chicks hatch 27-28 days after the eggs are laid in the incubator.
Keeping and feeding chicks
Chicks white broad-chested turkey are hardy and unpretentious to the conditions of detention and feeding. The optimal feeding regimen for newborn turkey poults is 8 times a day; special feed or a mixture based on shredded boiled eggs and dried small cereals is used as feed.
After a month, chopped greens should be added to the food - leaves of young cabbage or alfalfa. Rubber or silicone troughs should be used to prevent injury to chicks. In addition, feeders and drinkers should be located in the immediate vicinity of the poults.
Newborn turkey poults should be kept in a brooder with round-the-clock lighting and a temperature of 36 ° C. Humidity in the first 10 days should be in the range from 70% to 75%, then it should be lowered by 10%. After a month and a half, the brooder should not be covered more than eight hours a day.
In order to avoid infection of turkey poults, you should clean the litter daily and completely change it at least once a week. In addition, care must be taken to ensure that chicks do not get wet. Failure to comply with any of the above measures is fraught with disease or death of poults.
Features of maintenance and care
The room for keeping turkeys is selected depending on the number of individuals, as well as taking into account the appearance of the young. One adult individual must account for at least 1 m 2 of floor space; it will also be necessary to arrange roosts for sleeping. In summer, the temperature in the house should be in the range of 22 to 25 ° C, in the winter it should not fall below 5 ° C.
In the house should be insulated windows, as well as electric lighting. The selected room should be dry, insulated and ventilated, dampness and drafts are unacceptable. On the floor should be a bed of straw or a thick layer of sawdust. At least twice a year, the litter must be completely replaced. It is also necessary to monitor the appearance of mouse or rat holes - often rodents are carriers of infectious diseases, large rats can destroy the young.
White wide-breasted turkeys are not prone to obesity, but must spend enough time outdoors during the day.
Pasture for birds should:
- have sufficient area depending on the number of birds,
- be sown with grass, preferably clover or alfalfa,
- be equipped with drinking bowls and fenced around the perimeter - a board fence as a fence will also protect birds from the wind.
Feeding white broad-chested turkeys should be done at least three times a day, and up to five times during mating periods. The daily ration should consist of dry and wet mixtures based on dry and germinated grain. The diet should differ depending on the time: in the morning and in the afternoon, the turkeys should be given wet feed mixtures, in the evening - dry grain. Also in the warm season in the feed mixture should be added a lot of greens. In the cold season it is necessary to include chopped beets, cabbage, carrots and steamed hay in the diet.
For young animals and adults, there should be separate feeders, the size of feeders should be selected depending on the number of individuals. It is necessary to monitor the condition of the drinkers - white wide-breasted turkeys require a lot of water: for adult individuals nippel drinkers are optimal, for young stock - vacuum.
White poultry turkeys, like all poultry, are susceptible to various diseases. At the same time, adults are sick much less often in comparison with young animals. Successful transfer of a disease depends primarily on the nature of the pathology, as well as the existing conditions of detention and feeding. Regardless of bird immunity, ignoring the existing symptoms is fraught with serious consequences - from the loss of a few individuals to the deaths of the entire population.
Among the main diseases of white broad-chested turkeys are:
- respiratory mycoplasmosis,
- pullorosis (bird fever),
- helminthic invasions.
The disease can be transmitted to the bird from a sick person by airborne droplets. In addition, pathogens of tuberculosis can get into the litter of the house, food or water. Individuals of all ages are equally affected. Tuberculosis is not treatable, sick individuals are subject to slaughter and disposal. After an outbreak of the disease, the house must be thoroughly disinfected.
The disease is infectious in nature, it may appear due to improper diet or hypothermia. The disease is especially dangerous for young individuals, since the drugs have an additional negative impact on their health and in most cases diseased turkeys do not survive.
This infectious disease can be transmitted to turkeys from other poultry, flies and mosquitoes also spread smallpox. The disease is not treated, sick individuals are subject to slaughter and disposal. After a smallpox outbreak, the house must be thoroughly disinfected.
Due to weak immunity, turkey poults are more commonly infected with coccidiosis. Despite the dangerous infectious nature, the disease is treatable. At the same time, sick individuals should be isolated, and the house should be disinfected.
Among the main preventive measures to minimize the risk of disease among white broad-chested turkeys are:
- Strict compliance with the standards of humidity and temperature in the house, no drafts.
- Regular cleaning and disinfection of the house. For these purposes, it is possible to use hydrated lime or special chemicals.
- The use of high-quality feed. Expired feed mixtures or feed containing foreign substances should be disposed of.
- Regular vaccinations and bird examinations by qualified veterinarians.
- Immediate isolation of individuals with atypical behavior or obvious symptoms of the disease.
White wide-breasted turkeys have good adaptability and are unpretentious in their care. With strict adherence to the recommended conditions, turkeys rarely get sick and actively multiply. Representatives of this breed are the best choice for arranging personal poultry farming.