The Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm

The Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm

Maintaining records is an important part of any business, especially in the poultry farming industry or on your chicken farm. It will be a valuable resource for monitoring and evaluation, as well as analyzing your farm’s profits and losses thus far.


Only by properly documenting data on a regular basis can a firm be efficiently managed. As a result, we should consider outlet farming as a business.

The poultry farm records kept are primarily a record of accountability and, secondarily, a management data system. They must be trustworthy and relevant. When this information is recorded, it should be accessible at any time.

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Poultry farm records should be straightforward, easy to understand, and devoid of repetition; yet, they must contain all necessary information.


The poultry farm records should be able to clearly explain where the business stands and how it is doing.

The record’s history will give the entrepreneur a clear image of all prior mistakes that should be avoided in the future.

The poultry farm records are required to examine production performance and ensure that it complies with the established requirements.

If there are any future plans, revisions, or additions, the poultry farm documents should offer that information.


In general, records from poultry farms can be divided into two categories:

  • Production / Technical records
  • Financial records

The records’ nature varies depending on the type and scale of the business.

Regardless of the style or size of the business, the following fundamental records must be kept, especially to serve as a reference for newcomers to poultry farming and as an important tool for proper poultry management:

1. Attendance and daily wages register

● This refers to the number of people working on a daily basis and the pay paid to them, as well as the stamped acquaintance.

2. Building Registers

● This covers a variety of farm structures as well as other civil works such as wells, fencing, and roadways.

● This register is used to keep track of minor repairs and the costs associated with their upkeep.

● Furthermore, the annual depreciation on structures should be calculated each year.

● The actual value of the buildings should be brought forward for various accounting reasons after deducting annual depreciation.

3. Equipment Register

● This includes various farm equipment machineries like feed mill, vehicles, cages, incubators, feeders, drinkers etc.

● The date, source, number, and cost of purchase of equipment must be recorded.

● The repairs carried out along with the details of repairs also must be indicated.

● The annual depreciation should be calculated for equipment and the actual post-depreciation value for equipment must be brought forward for the next year.

4. Feed and feed ingredient register

● Feed is the major item of expenditure in poultry production. Hence, much care should be exercised in maintaining this register.

Few pages must be allotted for each feed ingredient of the feed.

● For each of these items, the opening balance, receipts, issues, storage loss, manufacturing cost, and the closing balance has to be maintained.

● In the remarks column, the source of purchase, invoice number, and date and cost per unit must be indicated.

● Since the feed ingredient prices vary frequently, the actual ingredient cost for each batch of feed mixed must be taken into account, for accurate calculation.

The Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm

5. Feed additives and medicines register

● This register keeps track of the various feed additives, medicines, vaccines, disinfectants, and chemicals purchased and utilized.

● The opening balance, receipts, issues, closing balance, and a remarks column must be maintained for each item.

● In the remarks column, the invoice number, date, cost, and source of each purchase have to be indicated.

Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm

6. Petty items or miscellaneous purchase/ expenditure register

● In this register, all miscellaneous purchases like tools, stationary, bulbs, nails, etc., and other day-to-day expenditures have to be recorded and a monthly and annual consolidated report has to be prepared to calculate miscellaneous expenditures.

● In addition to the above-mentioned common registers, the following specific registers have to be maintained, depending on the nature of the farm and type of enterprise.

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7. Layer farm register

● For each batch, the production performance register has to be maintained from day one to disposal; with the following columns.

● Date, age in days, opening balance of birds, mortality, feed issued, feed/ bird/ day, eggs produced, % Hen-day egg production, Feed/ egg, and remarks.

● The remarks column should deal with the date of vaccinations, debeaking, medication, post-mortem report if any, sale of culled birds, and any other relevant information.

● A separate book has to be maintained for each batch from day one to disposal so that batch-wise economics can be calculated.

8. Egg out turn register

● This is a consolidated record of egg turnover by all batches maintained on the farm at a time.

● This will take into account the eggs produced by all the batches of layers on the farm.

● This register consists of the following columns namely: Date, opening balance of eggs, eggs produced, sold, and closing balance of eggs and remarks.

● Number and sale price of the pullet eggs and broken saleable eggs may also be maintained.

● Moreover, the day-to-day sale price of eggs must be recorded daily.

● The monthly and annual consolidated report, indicating the volume and value of the total eggs turnover may be furnished.

9. Broiler farm records

● For broiler farms, a batch-wise performance sheet has to be maintained, with the following columns.

● Before the regular columns, the batch number, source of chicks, number of paid and free chicks received, date of the hatch, cost per chick, and strain, have to be recorded.

● The regular data to be recorded are date, age in days, opening balance of birds, mortality, total feed issued, and remarks.

● In the remarks column the medication and vaccination details and cause of death may be indicated.

● These regular columns should continue up to 56 days; but recording should be done until the date of sale.

● Below these regular columns are the following particulars like total live body weight of birds sold, number of birds sold, percent mortality, total feed consumed, feed conversion ratio, cost of feed, the sale price of broilers sold, cost of chicks, and miscellaneous cost (electricity, labor, medicine, vaccination, fuel, etc) have to be recorded.

● Based on the above data, the actual cost of production/ kg live weight and the profit/ loss incurred for that batch has to be calculated.

10. Breeder farm records

● The records will be similar to that of the layer farm. However, one more column, namely the number of hatching eggs produced daily has to be included in the batch-wise performance and egg out turn register.

11. Hatchery records

● The hatchery should maintain a register similar to that of the egg out turn register but with some modified columns as follows:

Date, opening balance, receipts, settings, discards and sales, chicks produced, chicks sold, chicks discarded, free chicks, and remarks.

12. Batch-wise hatchery sheet

● This may be maintained, to provide the following information.

● Serial setting number, number of eggs set, type of eggs, strain, source of eggs, number of eggs discarded, number of eggs transferred to hatcher, number of good chicks hatched, number of weak chicks, number of pullet chicks (in case of egg-type only), number of male chicks and mode of disposal, percent total hatchability and percent fertility.

13. Chick-out turn and disposal register

● This register consists of strain-wise chick out turn and disposal particulars, consisting of date, opening balance of chicks, chicks hatched, chicks sold, chicks used for own purpose, chicks discarded, chicks given as free margin, closing balance, price per chick and remarks.

● The remarks column should have Marek’s disease vaccination and other particulars.

14. Feed mill record

● The feed mill registers will be similar to the general registers discussed above but with more details about individual feed ingredients.

● Instead of maintaining a few pages for each ingredient and feed in the same register, a separate register has to be maintained for each ingredient and feed.

● An extra column showing the feed ingredient shortage due to storage, grinding, and mixing loss has to be indicated at the expiry of each batch or lot received or mixed.

● Moreover, the remarks column must indicate the source of purchase, bill number, unit price, and mode of payment, in case of feeding ingredients.

In case of different feeds prepared – to who sold, quality, rate per unit, invoice number, and mode of receipt should be indicated.

Note: Multivitamins should be added to water for 5 to 7 days after vaccination, after deworming, after transportation of the birds, after debeaking, and in case of other stressful factors.

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Below is the Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm:

The Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm

  • Records provide the basis for evaluation of animals from past records and hence help in the selection and culling of animals
  • Helps in preparing pedigree and history records of animals.
  • Helps in assessing the past records and designing better breeding plans to check to inbreed, selecting superior parents, and helps in better replacement and culling practices.
  • Helps in progeny testing of bulls.
  • Helps in analysing feeding costs and benefits from animal product outputs. Hence helps to formulate economic feeding strategies for optimal production.
  • Helps in the detection of abnormal conditions or disease status of the herd that leads to a loss in body weight, loss in milk production, etc.
  • Helps in finding the commonly occurring diseases in the herd and thus formulate time precautionary measures like vaccination, deworming, etc.
  • Helps in fixing proper prices of animals meant for purchase and sale.
  • Helps in overall better supervision and management of the herd.
  • Helps in ascertaining the income and expenditure (economics) of dairy farms.
  • Helps in estimating the cost of milk production.
  • Helpful in comparing the efficiency of labour and herd with other farms.
  • To compare the herd performances in different years to determine the amount of profit/loss each year and setting future goals/directions for the farm.

The Importance of Keeping Records on a Poultry Farm