Livestock Research for Rural Development 27 (4) 2015 Guide for preparation of papers LRRD Newsletter

Citation of this paper

Management of Broiler Farms in Aizawl District of Mizoram, India

S Rahman

Assistant Professor, Department of Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Extension Education
College of Veterinary Sciences & Animal Husbandry, Central Agricultural University Selesih, Aizawl, Mzoram, India


Poultry development in Mizoram state of India has taken a new turn in the late eighties with the establishment of broiler farms in various places. A study was conducted in Aizawl district of the state to know the prevailing management system in the broiler farms. A total 60 farmers were randomly selected and interviewed personally with a structured interview schedule. The study revealed that farmers were rearing adult birds in raised slatted floor made up of bamboo. An overwhelming majority of farmers (96.67 %) did not vaccinate their birds and the mortality rate of the poultry were very high (17.67%) due to the diseases like enlargement of liver, diarrhoea, paralysis, dysentery etc. Most of the farmers (60.00%) sold their birds at the age above 3 months or when the birds gained body weight of 3-4 kg to the wholesalers.

Keywords: broiler, Mizoram, management


Poultry sector is a dynamic industry. All over the world, efforts continue for expansion of production, new production methods and for new poultry products. Poultry keeping in India about four decade ago was a backyard venture. However, during last three decades, there has been spectacular growth in poultry farming in the country. (Handa, M.C. 2003). Poultry farming has been a popular choice of vocation for small farmers. It is advantageous to such farmers as land and capital requirements are small, it starts returns with a regular income and it has potential for providing rural employment (Singh 2003). Poultry development in Mizoram has taken a new turn in the late eighties with establishment of broiler farms in various places. Though there is no large scale poultry industry in Mizoram, almost 70.00 per cent of the farmers keep poultry for subsidiary income. The estimated number of broilers available for consumption in the state during the year 2012-13 was 847,763 and net meat production was 1,561 tones. The per capita availability of broiler meat for the year 2012-13 was estimated at 1.39 kg per year (Integrated Sample Survey, 2012-13).

Though the broiler farming has grown over the years in the state, no systematic study has so far conducted to know this sector. Keeping this in mind, the present study was undertaken with the objective to study the management practices followed by the broiler farmers.

Materials and Methods

A sample survey using a structured questionnaire with both closed and open ended questions was conducted in Aizawl District of Mizoram, India. Aizawl is located in Mizoram State, situated in the North-east India. A multi stage random sampling procedure was used to select the respondents. Two blocks, namely, Aibawk and Tlangnuam were randomly selected and from each selected block 5 villages were selected randomly i.e. 10 villages were selected. From each selected village a list of farmers rearing 25 or more broilers were prepared in consultation with Village Council and six farmers from each village were randomly selected. Thus, the sample for the study comprised a total of 60 respondents. The interview schedule for data collection was developed covering the production and management practices followed by the farmers. Personal interview, direct observation were used to collect data from the respondents. The management practices have been categorized in to five different aspects namely, General Care and Management, Feeding, Housing, Health Care and Marketing Practices. The data were collected during October, 2013 to March, 2014.

Result and Discussion

Management Practices followed by the broiler farmers

The salient observations are presented for each practice in Table 1. A. General Care and Management Practices.

It is seen that nearly two-third (63.33%) of the farmers provided water with glucose to the chicks after their arrival in the farms. The rain water and natural fountains were the main source of water for the majority (56.67%) of the farmers and 60.00% of the respondents did not treat the water before providing to the birds. More than half of the respondents (53.33%) fumigated their poultry shed before entering new batches of chicks. All respondents used electric lamps as a source of heat in the farm and used these lamps 18-24 hours to the age group of 0 to 3 weeks birds in winter and 12-18 hours in case of summer. An overwhelming majority (83.33%) of the farmers used saw dust as the litter material for the chicks. Cent percent of the farmers did not place thermometer inside the brooders to check the temperature level. It might be due to lack of knowledge on temperature requirements of the birds.

Table 1. Management Practices followed by the Broiler Farmers
Sl. No. Management Practices Frequency
n %
A General Care and Management    
1 After arrival in the Farms, Chicks were provided with
1. Water with glucose 38 63.3
2. Water with others like electrolyte 10 16.7
3. Feed 12 20.0
2 Duration of heat
1. Winter (18-24 hours) 60 100
2. Summer (12-18 hours) 60 100
B Feed Practices
1 Types of feed used
1. Pre starter (0-2 weeks) 0 0
2. Starter (3-4/5 weeks) 60 100
3. Finisher (above 5weeks) 60 100
2 Feed additives
1. Used 20 33.3
2. Not used 40 66.7
3 Daily feed supply
1. Twice 2 3.3
2. Thrice 58 96.7
C Housing practices
1 Construction of poultry shed
1. Bamboo 58 96.7
2. Wood 2 3.3
2 Construction of floor
1. Raised floor (platform type) 55 91.7
2. Concrete 5 8.3
3 Floor space requirements
1. As recommended (1sq.feet per adult bird) 2 3.3
2. More than recommended 58 96.7
4 Water storage facility
1. Present 60 100
2. No present 0 0
5 Electricity facility
1. Present 60 100
2. No present 0 0
D Health care practices
1 Vaccination
1. Practices 2 3.3
2. No practices 58 96.7
2 Use of antibiotic
1. Used 56 93.3
2. No used 4 6.7
3 Use of anthelmentics
1. Used 2 3.3
2. No used 58 96.7
4 Mortality rate
1. Low (up to 5%) 2 3.3
2. Medium (6-10%) 20 33.3
3. High (more than 10%) 38 63.4
5 Diseases in the farm as told by the farmer
1. Diarrhoea 58 96.7
2. Paralysis 56 93.3
3. Dysentery 40 66.7
E Marketing practices
1 Purchase of Chicks and feed
1. From local market 60 100
2. Out side the state 0 0
2 Sale of Birds
1. Whole sale Market 46 76.7
2. Retail Market 4 6.7
3. Both wholesale and retail Market 10 16.6
3 Body weight at selling
1. 1.5-3 kg 8 13.3
2. 3-4 kg 36 60.0
3. Above 4 kg 16 26.7
4 Age at selling
1. At 7/8 weeks 8 13.3
2. 2-3 months 16 26.7
    3. Above 3 months 36 60.0
Feeding Practices

It is one of the most important aspects of broiler management. The performance of the farm mostly depends on how the farmers are managing the feeding practices in his/her farm. Cent percent of the farmers did not provide pre-starter ration to the chicks and only used starter ration for the chicks. Nearly two-third (66.67%) of the farmers did not supplement any feed additives to the birds but sometimes they mixed the ration with fine rice grain. The reason behind this might be the high cost of feed supplements that the farmers could not afford. The farmers supplied three times feed in a day to the birds depending upon the number of birds in the farms.

Housing Practices

The poultry farmers of the district were using locally available material for construction of poultry houses. They used bamboos for construction of walls. Majority of the farmers (91.67%) reared the adult birds in raised slatted floor (platform) made up of bamboos. They were rearing birds in raised platform because rice husk and saw dust were very difficult to get and costly but bamboos were easily available and cost effective. Another reason might be that water entered the poultry shed during rainy season and dampened the floor of the farms. Two-third (63.33%) of the farmer was having water storage facility in their farms as they harvested water from rain and natural fountains. Cent percent of the farmers had electricity facility. Nearly two third (63.33%) of the farmers were using floor space more than required. The reason might be lack of knowledge on recommended space requirement of the birds.

Health Care Practices

The available facilities and awareness of the farmers about rearing poultry in a proper way probably the best reflected by the existing health practices followed by the farmers.

A perusal of the Table 1 clearly indicates that by and large health care practices are neglected by the farmers. Vaccination against diseases which is minimum requirements of poultry farming was almost absent, only 3.33% of the respondents vaccinated their birds against one disease (Newcastle disease). Itmight be due to the non-availability of the vaccine in the market and lack of knowledge on importance of vaccination to the birds. The same percent (3.33%) of the farmers dewormed their birds against worms while majority (93.33%) of the farmers used antibiotic when the birds suffered from any diseases. The average mortality rate in the farms was very high (17.67%) and in nearly two-third (63.33%) of the farms the mortality rate was above 10.00 per cent. The high mortality rate might be due to the poor health care practices followed by the farmers and keeping the birds beyond standard rearing period of the broilers. Many studies reported that the mortality was below 10.00 per cent (Jadhav et al 2002, Patro et al 2002, Singh et al 2003, Ershad et al 2004 and Bhende 2006). It is observed that birds were suffering from diseases like diarrhoea, paralysis, dysentery etc. in most of the farms. The majority of deaths were attributed to Ascitis Syndrome, Chronic Respiratory Diseases (CRD), Enteritis and Coccidiosis were the main cause of mortality in broilers (Rajkhowa 2004, Sarma and Borthakur 2006 and Pugashetti and Shivakumar 2007).

Marketing Practices

The marketing of birds at profitable prices can make the system viable. The poultry sector in this state is unorganized one and the marketing system is oriented neither to the producers nor to the consumers, but to the middleman. It is observed during the study that the farmers procured the chicks from local market of Aizawl city at the price ranging fromRs.40/-to Rs.50/- per chick while the price of feed varies from Rs.30/- to Rs.45/- per kg. The farmers (60.00%) sold the birds at the age above 3 months or when the birds attained 3-4 kg live body weight. The reason behind the selling of birds at this weight might be that consumers only preferred the birds weighing above two kg. Majority (76.67%) of the respondents sold their birds to wholesale market at the price ranged between Rs.130/- to Rs.150/- while the retail price was Rs.160/-Rs.180/- at the time of investigation. It shows that a lion’s share of the profit goes to the middleman only. A major part (58.00 %) of the total birds produced by the sample farms are sold to whole-sellers in Karnataka (Bhende 2006).


Poultry sector helps in generating employment. The broiler management system is not efficient to meet the ever increasing demand of the consumers. The mortality rate is found to be very high. To enhance the productivity of the farms the management practices needs to be improved. There is a major role for the extension workers to provide management information through training, farm visits, to improve the knowledge level of the farmers in order to enhance profitability and productivity of broiler farms. The marketing system for broilers is disorganized. The middleman and commission agents control the marketing system. There is an urgent need to form cooperatives or common interest groups to prevent the exploitation of the farmers.


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Received 26 September 2014; Accepted 9 January 2015; Published 1 April 2015

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