Evaluation of Live and Dressed Poultry Cody Lowe
Poultry Evaluation Rules • Humane treatment of live animals. • 10 minutes to place the live or dressed poultry
Broiler Breeder Evaluation • Meat Type • 8 cockerels or pullets • Broiler breeders will be the same age (8 weeks old) • Same strain • Raised under the same environmental conditions • A form of identification will be used to designate each bird (usually numbered) • Selection class: keep 4 and cull 4
Broiler Breeder: Deformities • Deformity – a serious body defect that (a) the bird could transmit to its offspring and/or (b) reduce the birds value as a breeder • Result in automatic cull • Could be up to 4 birds with deformities in the class
Broiler Breeder: Deformities Cont. • Deformities include: • Green shank or shanks up to 1” or more per shank and toe • Severely crooked toe or toes ( one or more toes are turned at an angle of 90 degrees or more) • One or more solid black feathers in the primaries, secondaries, axial feather, main tail feathers, and sickles of a cockerel. • Permanent absence of main tail feathers
Broiler Breeder: Deformities Cont. • Wry or crooked neck • Leg and foot abnormalities that affect the bird’s ability to walk • Crossed beak (seriously deformed beak) • Blind in one or both eyes • Severely crooked back • Severely crooked keel
Broiler Breeder: Body Conformation • Body conformation: bird’s structure (the shape and size of body parts relative to each other) • Evaluate body conformation by measuring: (a) width across the shoulders (b) length of back (c) depth of body (d) length of keel (e) spring of ribs and (f) width across hips. • These can be estimated by using the width or length of your hand.
Broiler Breeder: Body Conformation • Width Across Shoulders: Measured from wing joint to wing joint. • Body Length: Measured from base of neck to base of tail. Should be 1.5 times the width across shoulders. • Depth of Body: Measured from backbone to keel bone. Should be equal to or exceed body width across shoulders at front and rear of keel bone.
Broiler Breeder: Body Conformation • Length of Keel: Length of keel should be equal to or greater than width across shoulders. • Spring of Ribs: The width across the back between the hips and wings.Should equal the width across shoulders. • Width Across Hips: Width across hips should exceed the width across shoulders.
Broiler Breeder: Breast Meat Quantity • Breast meat quantity is closely related to body conformation • Refers to the amount of muscling in the breast area • Can be objectively measured like body conformation
Broiler Breeder: Breast Meat Quantity • Evaluation of breast meat quantity requires measuring: a. length of muscling b. depth of muscling c. width of muscling d. carry of muscling
Broiler Breeder: Breast Meat Quantity • Width of Muscling: Determined by the width of breast between the points of wing attachment. • Carry of Muscling: Determined by how well the breast meat width carries from the points of wing attachment to the end of the keel bone.
Broiler Breeder: Breast Meat Quantity • Length of Muscling: Determined by the length of the keel. Muscling should extend the full length of the keel, making it 1.5 times greater than the width of muscling. • Depth of Muscling: Determined by the depth of the body. Should be equal to or greater than the width of muscling. Keel bone should also run parallel with backbone.
Proper Handling of Broiler Breeders • Participants are allowed to handle birds, but only while the birds are in the cage. • Participant may raise bird from the coop floor, but only as necessary. • Excessive handling may cause down grading of the bird. • Mishandling will result in disqualification of the participant.
Proper Handling of Broiler Breeders: Determining Width Across Shoulders and Width of Muscling • Face one side of the bird, position the thumb and index finger of one hand at each wing attachment. • Place thumb and index finger of other hand on each side of the front of the breast. • Hands should be directly opposite each other.
Proper Handling of Broiler Breeders: Determining Length of Keel and Length of Muscling • Position front of bird to front of cage. • Maintain position of one hand at the wing attachment points • Move the fingers of the other hand along the breast from front to rear of keel bone
Proper Handling of Broiler Breeders: Determine Width and Length of Back • Face the front of the bird and place each hand on opposite sides of the bird’s back. • Palms should be against the birds body with fingers extended to the rear of bird. • This give the participant an idea of the spring of ribs, width of hips and length of back
Proper Handling of Broiler Breeders: Determining Body Depth and Depth of Muscling • Position rear of bird to front of cage. • Place thumb and index finger of one hand on back of bird at each wing attachment. • From rear of bird, move other hand with palm upward between the bird’s legs. • Place thumb and index finger on each side of the front of the breast directly below the other hand.
Proper Handling of Broiler Breeders: Determining Carry of Breast and Length of Keel • Maintain the bird with rear to the front of the cage. • Place a hand on the bird’s shoulders. • Place the palm of the other hand (that is already under the bird) along the keel. • Run fingers along the breast from front to rear of the keel.
Evaluating Egg-Type Hens • Placing class of four birds • Same age • Same strain • Raised under same environmental conditions • Form of identification will be used to designate each bird
Evaluating Egg-Type Hens Cont. • Participants may touch birds inside and outside the cages using proper handling procedures • Placing hens depends on: (a) pigmentation (b) handling qualities and abdominal capacity (c) plumage condition and molt (d) constitutional vigor and vitality (e) head and head parts
Egg-Type Hens: Pigmentation • 35% emphasis • Used to describe the presence or absence of yellow pigment in the skin, shanks, and feet of the egg type chicken • Pigment fades from body parts as a hen lays eggs • Order of fading and rate at which pigment fades are important for evaluation
Egg-Type Hens: Pigmentation Cont. • Rate at which pigment fades: 1. Vent 2. Eye ring 3. Earlobe 4. Base of beak 5. Tip of beak 6. Bottom of foot 7. Shank 8. Hock and top of toe
Egg-Type Hens: Handling Qualities • Refers to general condition of abdomen • Abdomen of good layer is wide, soft, and expanded • Pelvic bones are thin and flexible • Vent is moist, large, and oblong
Egg-Type Hens: Abdominal Capacity • Measured and expressed by fingers widths between pelvic bones, and between pelvic bone and keel bone • Exp: 3 fingers width by 4 fingers width means 3 fingers wide between pelvic bones and 4 fingers wide between pelvic bone and keel bone
Egg-Type Hens: Plumage Condition and Molt • 15% emphasis • Plumage condition – feather appearance • Molting rate – speed of shedding feathers
Egg-Type Hens: Plumage Condition • Feathers of high producing hen may be frayed, ragged, dirty, and dull • Feathers of low producing hen may be smooth, show little or no wear, and exhibit a shiny appearance
Egg-Type Hens: Molt • High producing hen molts in late fall and winter and spends a short amount of time molting • Should not molt until after 12 to 14 months of egg production • A low producing hen has a long molting period (up to 18 weeks) • Laying rate is reduced during molting
Egg Type Hens: Molt Cont. • Examine primary feathers to determine rate of molt • Primaries molt in order from the axial feather outward, staring at primary feather #1 and ending at primary feather #10
Egg-Type Hens: Vigor and Vitality • 10% emphasis • Healthy and vigorous hens produce eggs for a long time • High-producing hens appear vigorous, alert, and quick in movement
Egg-Type Hens: Head and Head Parts • A productive hen’s beak is short • Eyes are bright, alert, and round • Skull is flat from side to side • Comb and wattles are large, bright red, velvety, soft and warm
Egg-Type Hens: Examining • Before taking hens out of the cage, step back and examine them as a group • Try and have and idea of which ones are your top and bottom • Sometimes the placing is obvious
Egg-Type Hens: Proper HandlingStep 1 • Approach the cage slowly and open the door quietly • Grasp the hen using both hand to hold the wings • Arrange hen to where her head points towards the door
Egg-Type Hen: Proper HandlingStep 2 • With one hand holding the hen’s wings, place the other hand under the keel bone with hocks between fingers • Lift and remove the hen from the cage
Egg-Type Hen: Proper HandlingStep 3 • Position the hen’s head upward • Examine the hocks, legs, feet and toes for pigmentation • Position the hen’s head downward • Examine the vent for pigmentation and handling qualities by spreading the feathers and vent with thumb and index finger
Egg-Type Hen: Proper HandlingStep 4 • Keep hen in downward position • Gently roll skin in the abdominal area between fingers to feel for fat condition and softness
Egg-Type Hen: Proper HandlingStep 5 • Keep hen in downward position • Measure abdominal capacity by pelvic bone spread, and between pelvic bones and tip of keel bone
Egg-Type Hen: Proper HandlingStep 6 • Position the hen to allow one of the wings to be opened • Use a free hand to fan out the feathers • Examine the primaries for signs of molt
Egg-Type Hen: Proper HandlingStep 8 • Arrange hen for head examination • Feel of comb and wattle • After completing examination, return the hen head first into the cage • Close cage door
Ready-to-Cooks: Carcass/Parts Evaluation • Grade a class of 10 chicken and/or turkey carcasses and/or parts • Grades: A, B, C, and Non-gradable • Participant is not allowed to touch a carcass or parts • If shackles are used to hold carcass, participant is allowed to rotate the shackles