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...
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:
And ultimately profits.
But the question remains:
"Just how much floor space is required for a layer farming poultry house?"
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:
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..
- Rearing system
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?
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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
[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.]
- 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
Further reading: 'Good practices in planning and management of integrated commercial poultry production in South Asia' - FAO
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