Floor Space Requirement For Layers: Online Calculator for Best Practice

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Floor space requirement for layers is a critical factor in layer poultry farming.

Accommodating your birds ample space to move within their poultry house has quantifiable knock-on benefits.

Egg production in particular requires additional attention when it comes to space allocation…

Mainly because of the logistical issues involved in the laying process.

The cost of layer floor space

With much of the ROI (return-on-investment) potential of a layer farm wrapped up in the recouping of startup costs like…

Floor Space Requirement For Layers
Image courtesy of: Dribble.com

Poultry house construction…

…conserving floor space is a key factor for layer farming profitability.

Every sq. ft. saved on building poultry housing floor space by witty design, puts more earnings back in your pocket

However the converse is also true.

If you overstock on your layer hens (put too many hens in your house) then rearing conditions become detrimental:

…damaging production…

And ultimately profits.

But the question remains:

“Just how much floor space is required for a layer farming poultry house?”

But…

Before I answer that question, we ask:

Why is a minimum floor space required for layers?

The following article published in Barn Health Blog addresses this query by outlining some common outcomes for when floor space is less than optimal:

Effects of getting floor space requirements for layers wrong

Consequences when not enough space per layer hen:

  • Increase mortality…
  • decreased hen-day egg production…
  • decreased hen-housed egg production…
  • more egg breakage…
  • increased the number of floor eggs…
  • and reduced net profit per bird…
  • variable effects on total farm profits!

Further reading:Overstocking, Overcrowding, Excessive Density of Laying Hens” – Barn Health Blog

Factors affecting minimum floor space requirement for layers

Exact floor space allocation per layer hen in poultry farms is dependant upon a few factors..

Namely:

  • Climate
  • Rearing system
  • Age

When calculating the necessary floor space which you will allow for each layer bird in your poultry farming operation – you’ll need to consider the points above.

Are you trying to work out your poultry house space requirements long hand?

Need some help?

The Layer Floor Space Requirement Calculator


  • Where should I send the result?

  • Convert No. of Birds to Floor Space Required


    This half of the calculator is for you, if...

    ...you know how many birds you want to raise, but don't know the recommended floor space requirement.

    It answers questions like,

    "What is the recommended minimum floor space for a layer farm flock size of 2,500?"
  • Convert Available Floor Space to Maximum No. of Birds


    This half of the calculator is for you, if...

    ...you know how much floor space you have available, but don't know the maximum number of birds it could accommodate.

    It answers questions like,

    "How many layers can I safely rear in 200m2 of floor space?"

Recommended floor space requirement for layers (FAO guidelines)

Here are some useful references for recommended floor space requirements for layer poultry farms:

Deep litter floor space requirement for layers

  • Brooder house minimum floor space allowance…
    • 675 cm2 per bird / 0.0675 sq. m. per bird / 0.726564 sq. ft per bird 
  • Grower house (or Brooder cum Grower house) minimum floor space allowance…
    • 1260 cm2 per bird / 0.126 sq. m. per bird / 1.356253 sq. ft. per bird
  • Layer house minimum floor space allowance…
    • 1800 cm2 per bird / 0.18 sq. m. per bird / 1.937504 sq. ft. per bird

Cage system floor space requirement for layers

  • Brooder cage minimum floor space allowance…
    • 160 cm2 per bird / 0.016 sq. m. per bird / 0.172223 sq. ft. per bird
  • Grower cage minimum floor space allowance…
    • 325 cm2 per bird / 0.0325 sq. m. per bird / 0.349827 sq. ft. per bird
  • Layer cage minimum floor space allowance…
    • 450 cm2 per bird / 0.045 sq. m. per bird / 0.484376 sq. ft. per bird

[N.B. The recommendations above are for poultry farms based in South Asian countries. In hotter climates it is relatively expected that you would provide larger floor space. In cooler climes, less floor space is needed.]

Further reading: ‘Good practices in planning and management of integrated commercial poultry production in South Asia‘ – FAO


Are you a start-up poultry farm entrepreneur looking for a little more information?

Ask a question.

Are you a poultry farming expert with further insight on floor space requirement for layers?

Share your thoughts.

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Contact us.

10 thoughts on “Floor Space Requirement For Layers: Online Calculator for Best Practice

    1. Dear William,

      The details contained within the scope of this article indeed refer to just ‘floor space’ allocation.

      Height allocation becomes relevant when looking at rearing layers using a caged system.

      Dimensions of cage vary according to manufacturer’s specifications.

      This article by Tamil Nadu Agri Uni touches on typical cage height and consideration for sloping cage floor: 38cm – 42cm.

      Was there something more specific though, that I could help you with?

      Feel free to ask any further questions.

      Cole @ The Big Book Project

  1. Dear Peter,

    Thanks for the question.

    If you’ve got 300m sq. floor space for a layer farming operation, the following flock capacity would apply:

    Deep Litter

    – Brooder house: 20.25 m sq. for 300 chicks
    – Grower house: 37.80 m sq. for 300 growers
    – Layer house: 54 m sq. for 300 layer hens

    Caged System

    – Brooder house: 4.8 m sq. for 300 chicks
    – Grower house: 9.7 m sq. for 300 growers
    – Layer house: 13.5 m sq. for 300 layer hens

    Remembering the caveat mentioned in the article above re: climate. The figures above are based on Southern Asian climate.

    The hotter the climate, the more space allocation your birds will require to remain healthy and comfortable for optimal laying output.

    Would you like any further info?

    Please feel free to ask anytime.

    Cole @ The Big Book Project

    1. Dear Moses,

      Thank you for your question.

      You may have noticed we’ve added a NEW layer floor space calculator to our article above!

      When I put your figures into the calculator app, I get the following results:

      180m2 x 13.5 m2 = 2,430 m2

      • Max no. of brooders with deep litter rearing style – 36,000
      • Max no. of growers with deep litter rearing style – 19,286
      • Max no. of layers with deep litter rearing style – 13,500
      • Max no. of brooder with caged rearing style – 151,875
      • Max no. of growers with caged rearing style – 74,770
      • Max no. of layers with caged rearing style – 54,000

      However, if in doubt, there is a long-hand reference below inc. formulas and raw inputs.

      The figures your get here will apply to Nigeria (although based on climate in South Asia).

      I hope this helps your planning.

      Any questions, please feel free to ask.

      Yours sincerely,

      Cole @ The Big Book Project

  2. Hi,
    The calculator is not working since the upgrade. There is need to check and correct the fault.
    The interface is very helpful. Kudos to this great initiation.
    Thank you.

    1. Dear Usman,

      Thank you for the feedback – I’m working on correcting this problem.

      I am also in the process of releasing many more calculators and templates, all to assist you in building professional quality poultry farming project reports and business planning documents.

      My aim is that this will save you on pricey consultancy fees or making uninformed errors.

      I will make sure any updates on available resources will be immediately emailed to you and other subscribers once ready.

      I plan to be in touch.

      Yours sincerely,

      Temi @ The Big Book Project

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