Types And Importance Of Vaccination in Poultry Farming

Types And Importance Of Vaccination in Poultry Farming

Some poultry producers claim that they have produced a number of birds in the past without vaccinating them and lost only a few, prompting them to question if poultry vaccination is necessary.


Well, if you are one of them, then you are lucky. What you should know about vaccines is that they are not intended to cure diseases, but rather to prevent them in poultry. This indicates that diseases can be avoided whether you use vaccines or not.

If chicken diseases do occur, your poultry vaccination will aid much in their prevention, and to be on the safe side, vaccination is preferable to relying on a chance with your investment.

Remember that prevention is better and less expensive than cure, so ensure you get the correct vaccination the next time because it could be your saving grace.

Vaccination is essential in the health management of the chicken flock. There are several diseases that can be avoided by vaccinating the birds. A vaccine helps to avoid a certain disease by activating or increasing the bird’s immune system, causing it to develop antibodies that fight the invading causative organisms. Types And Importance Of Vaccination in Poultry Farming.


Also Read List Of Poultry Equipments And Their Uses In Poultry Farming

Different Types of Vaccines

  • Living heterologous
  • Living vaccines
  • Living attenuated organisms
  • Killed organisms
  • Capsular polysaccharides
  • Subunit vaccines
  • DNA vaccines
  • Passive immunization
  • Edible vaccines

Live vaccine – the active part of the vaccine is the live organism that causes the disease. As such, it is capable of inducing the disease in birds that have not had previous contact with that organism. Vaccinated birds, in many cases, are able to infect non-vaccinated birds if housed together.

Attenuated vaccine – with this type of vaccine the organism has been weakened by special procedures during manufacture so that it has lost its ability to cause the serious form of the disease.


At worst, the birds may contract a very mild form of the disease, however, the vaccine still has the ability to trigger the immune system to produce antibodies.

Killed vaccine – with this type of vaccine the organism has been killed and is unable to cause the disease, although the ability to trigger the immune system remains. In many cases, the level of immunity produced by this form of the vaccine is weaker than that produced by live and attenuated vaccines.

Types And Importance Of Vaccination in Poultry Farming
Vaccination in Poultry Farming

Properties of Good Vaccines

  • Vaccines should have the ability to elicit the appropriate immune response for the particular pathogen and to give long-term protection (Production of life-long immunity)
  • Providing safety (Vaccine itself should not cause disease)
  • It should be stable (Retain immunogenicity) despite adverse storage conditions prior to administration
  • Inexpensive
  • A good vaccine should not induce autoimmunity or hypersensitivity

Also Read Types of Chicken Feed To Feed Your Poultry Chicken

Vaccine Administration

After determining the type of vaccine to be used, the route, technique, and frequency of administration, as well as the best strategy to integrate all of these components in the immunization program, must be determined. Vaccine delivery systems have a substantial impact on vaccination outcomes. One of the most common causes of immunization program failure is incorrect vaccine application. Various management tactics can be used depending on the type of poultry operation (at the hatchery or farm). Other factors to consider include the type of production, bird species, flock size, length of the production cycle, general health state, maternal immunity, vaccines to be used, and prices.

Vaccination Schedule for Poultry Production Of Broilers

Age (in days) Broiler vaccination schedule
Name of the vaccine Route
5-7 ND (Lentogenic) I/O
12-14 IBD I/O
19-21 ND (Lentogenic) I/O

Vaccination Schedule for Poultry Production Of Layers

Age (in days) Layer vaccination schedule
Name of the vaccine Route
MD (Bivalent) S/C
5-7 ND + IB Live I/O
7-10 MD (Bivalent) S/C
12-14 IBD Live I/O
22-24 IBD Live (Booster) I/O
28-30 ND+IB Live I/O
35-37 Coryza (Killed) S/C
45-47 Fowl Pox I/M
63-65 Coryza Killed(Booster) S/C
70-72 ND Mesogenic I/M
80 IB Live D/W
88-90 Fowl Pox (Booster) I/M
105-107 ND Live (Lentogenic) D/W
112-114 ND+IB Killed S/C
270 ND Live (Lentogenic) D/W
280 ND+IB Killed S/C
370 ND Live (Lentogenic) D/W
460 ND Live (Lentogenic) D/W

Poultry Vaccine Production

Vaccines are produced mainly in three forms:

  1. Liquid vaccine – it is in a fluid form and ready to use.
  2. Freeze-dried vaccine – the vaccine is stored as one pack of freeze-dried material and one pack of diluent, often a sterile saline solution. These have to be combined before use.
  3. Dust – where the vaccine is prepared for administration in dry form.

Vaccines are sold in dose lots, with the number of doses representing the number of fowls that can be vaccinated following the prescribed technique. Many vaccines have variances in the disease organism strains against which they are effective. It is critical to utilize the correct vaccine strain, which can only be determined by veterinarian advice.

Important Things To Note While Using Vaccines in Poultry Farm

Vaccines are fragile in many respects and require very careful handling to ensure they retain their potency. Poor handling procedures will, in most cases, result in a rapid decline in potency.

On receipt of the vaccine on the farm, check and record the following:

  1. That the vaccine has been transported in the recommended manner which is usually in the chilled or frozen state. Prolonged exposure to atmospheric temperature will result in rapid loss of potency.
  2. Type of vaccine – is it the vaccine ordered?
  3. The number of doses – has the correct amount been delivered?
  4. The expiry date of the vaccine – vaccines have a date by which there is a significant risk that they will no longer retain their potency and will not produce the immunity required. The expiry date is based on the vaccine being handled and stored in the recommended manner.

Other Things To Note

  • As soon as possible place the vaccine into recommended storage conditions. Read the instructions to find out what these are. However, freeze-dried material should be kept at a temperature below freezing and its diluent at a temperature just above freezing. Liquid vaccines are generally kept at temperatures just above freezing.
  • Remove the vaccines from storage immediately prior to their being used. Only remove and re-constitute enough for immediate needs and repeat this throughout the day if more is required. Do NOT mix what is required for an entire day at the start of the day and leave it to stand until required, as the vaccine will rapidly lose its efficacy.
  • Protect the vaccines after mixing them by holding them in an ice bath. Place ice in a small esky or similar container and place the container of the mixed vaccine in the ice. Some vaccines have a very short life once mixed. For example, Marek’s Disease has a life of about 1.5 hours after mixing IF HELD IN AN ICE BATH. It is much shorter if held in higher temperatures.
  • Use the recommended administration techniques and do not vary these without veterinary advice.
  • Always clean and sterilize the vaccination equipment thoroughly after use.
  • Always destroy unused mixed vaccines after the task has been completed. Some vaccines have the potential to cause harm if not destroyed properly.
  • Do not vaccinate birds that are showing signs of disease or stress.


Vaccines are frequently used in all chicken production methods. Vaccination programs can be carried out efficiently in a variety of settings provided they are tailored to the local environment and take into account factors such as the peculiarities of the poultry-producing section, the eco-epidemiological situation, and the availability of sufficient resources.

Types And Importance Of Vaccination in Poultry Farming