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ESTABLISHING A GAME FOWL FARM

How a game fowl production endeavor is to be started depends upon what is being aimed for. For those who find enjoyment in taking care of game fowls alone and just want a hobby, any number of game fowls will do. Bloodline may not be a question, as any will do. The hobby may be started anywhere, anytime. What is important is that there is ample space and time and the means of the hobbyist to sustain the activity. For those who want to go into serious game fowl production for the cockpit or for sale, there are considerations that have to be given serious thought. If for the pit or for breeding, the first game fowls must come from reliable breeders who produce good bloodlines. This increases ones chances of becoming a successful game fowl raiser or breeder. As a prominent game fowl breeder from Davao puts it, there are three As that are required of anybody who intends to go into serious game fowl breeding: that he has to AFFORD it; that he should be able to ACCOMMODATE it; and that he should be able to ATTEND to it. The absence of any one of these requirements will likely result in failure of a game fowl breeding endeavor. Without going into details, these requirements say is all. Advice on what exactly to do may be solicited from other successful game fowl raisers and cockfighting aficionados. Veterinary drug companies like Excellence Game Fowl Specialist conduct seminars on cockfighting and game fowl management from time to time, and the technical people of these companies are very willing to assist beginners. There are also cocking schools that offer semi-formal training both on cockfighting and game fowl management.

Size of the Project While it all depends upon what the beginner in the business wants, game fowl production experts advise that he starts with a modest project. Again, the size depends upon what he can afford. It should be one that he could readily finance. With a small flock, a beginner will not feel the pinch if ever he fails, It would allow him to just charge the outcome to his experience and start all over again. However small, the flock should allow him to gain the necessary learning experience, in preparation for future expansions. As long as he craves for more learning, he should, in time, be able to master all aspects of game fowl breeding and management. The size of a game fowl farm is measured in terms of the number of stags and cocks being corded, which can usually be known by looking at the number of teepees in it. The bigger the operation, the wider the area needed. This should always be in the mind of a beginner in planning his project. There are no definite recommendations on land area needed for a particular flock size. The cording area alone (where the teepees are) is very variable in size because of breeder preferences and capability. For instance, if one prefers using 5-feet tie cords, the cording area should not be smaller than the farthest the cock on cord could go, plus space allowance to keep the cocks reasonably far from each other, preventing unnecessary

fighting and tangling. In this case, the area should at least be 14 x 14 (196 square feet) per cock, equivalent to the 10 x 10, which is the farthest a bird could go, plus an extra 4 feet allowance between birds. Birds should not be tied too close to each other, as to be only 2 feet away when both their tie cords are stretched. Initially, they suffer dislocations when they lunge at their neighbor. When they become used to this distance, they start getting stale. In a cockfighting , a battlecock that is used to be corded closely with other battlecocks on the yard would not break even if he is already within striking distance from his opponent. Another major consideration in deciding the arena needed is the range. A bird should be provided at least 2 square meters of grassland. The bigger the area, the better. The other facilities that need to be installed or built in the farm should also be given due consideration in deciding the area needed for a game fowl farm. Suggested dimensions of these facilities are given in the topic on structures and equipment.

Fondness for the Game Fowl Most game fowl farm owners know the ins and outs of their business. This is because most have adopted a hands-on policy in running the farm, which has become possible because of their love for game fowls. Incidentally, fondness for the game fowl is an important requirement if one who is to start small is to succeed in game fowl production. If one is keenly interested in these birds, then he will always have the drive to learn more about them. Most large-scale producers of commercial chicken meat and eggs enjoy success in their business even without visiting their farm. They just hire persons in the know. While this may also be true in game fowl production, however, most owners have some sort of attachment to game fowls, to the point of personally managing the affairs of the farm. This is good for the business, since a client feels the owners concern whenever he visits a farm to look for game birds. There are game fowl farm owners who are neither cockfighting enthusiasts nor game fowl lovers but are into large-scale production because of the business in it. During cockfights, these farm owners have gaffers and handlers who do the work for them.

Site Selection The welfare of game fowls is the foremost consideration in choosing a site for a game fowl farm. Hence, factors like environmental temperature, water supply, soil type and topography, surroundings of the area and room for expansion have to be carefully looked at. A game fowl farm has to be accessible anytime of the year. This is important since a farm owner does not normally live in the farm, and that he has to be able to visit it regularly to make sure that is being ran smoothly. Accessibility is also important for the regular delivery of farm needs.

Environmental Temperature

While game fowls are less sensitive to heat than broilers, it is imperative that they are exposed to a cool but not windy environment. If possible, the environmental temperature should be close to 24oC (75oF). At 32oC (90oF) or higher, especially if humidity is also high (75% or higher), birds suffer from thermal stress. At these temperatures, fowls reach the limit of physical regulation that is normally through radiation from the skin and resorts to panting, which is the only other way by which birds are able to dissipate body heat. Birds do not have sweat glands, the normal mechanism for heat dissipation in other animals. Under normal conditions, radiation is via the skin, if skin temperature is higher than environmental temperature. Game fowls, particularly those being conditioned, need to be exposed to the right environmental temperature. These birds do physical activities regularly during training. Physical activity, just like increased feed consumption, increases body temperature, which needs to be dissipated. Normally, the bird loses heat through radiation and by panting, which is a considerable increase in respiration rate as the bird attempts to get rid of more body heat. Heat loss, particularly that through radiation, considerably slows down with higher environmental temperatures. If this happens, the bird may die of heat stroke. In brood hens, exposure to high environmental temperature results in a decrease in egg size, in the laying of thin-shelled eggs and in a reduction in egg production. Given the choice, game fowl breeders choose higher, cooler altitudes for game fowl production. High altitudes provide an environment that is within the so-called thermoneutral zone of game fowls. Such an environment allows for proper bird development. For practical reasons, the area must be windy. While wind increases heat loss in birds, it may topple farm structures. Too much draft also causes respiratory ailments in birds. The area should also have trees that serve as roosts for game fowls on range and provide them with a wholesome environment.

A game fowl farm on a high altitude. Too high environmental temperature results in a reduction in feed intake and an abnormally high water intake. With reduced intake, a bird is not able to get the level of nutrients it needs and, thus, results in malnutrition, which could have serious effects on game fowl performance. Reduction in feed intake though, may be compensated by adjustments in the nutrient composition of the diet given. Abnormally high water intake causes wet droppings, which invite flies. Flies can carry disease organisms, can cause feed and water contamination, and their proboscis (snout) leaves unsightly dark brown pockmarks on eggs. Flies lay eggs on the wet droppings, thus compounding the problem.

Water Supply Regardless of size of operation, a game fowl farm must have a reliable source of clean drinking water. Areas with water mains are assured o ample supply of potable water. However, since most farms are in the countryside, the usual sources of water are dug well, streams and springs. To ensure that potable water is readily available in the farm, an electric water pump may be installed. Water is very important nutrient that serves a multitude of functions in the bird. Chickens contain 55% to 75% water, depending on age. Younger fowls contain more water. Eggs contain about 65% water.

In a chickens body, water aids in the transport of nutrients and elimination of wastes, provides form and structure to its body, and helps maintain its body temperature. Chickens get rid of body heat through evaporation of water from their lungs. These functions necessitate ample water supply.

Soil Type and Topography Porous soil, or one that readily absorbs moisture, is advisable for game fowl raising. This facilitates drainage of ground water after a rain. This type of soil is also conducive to grass growth, which is a source of greens for birds. Greens have beta-carotene, the precursor of Vitamin A, which improves fowl vision. Soil that becomes sticky when wet is not good, because it retains moisture and when muddy, it sticks to the footpads of the bird. A waterlogged area may cause problems, especially with regard to flock health. A slopping area is desirable for a game fowl farm. Such an area does not become waterlogged during the rainy season, ensuring a healthy environment for birds. As much as possible, a flat land that becomes waterlogged after a rain should be avoided. If without other options, a flat land will do, but drainage has to be given utmost consideration. Breeders with farms on a flat land have resorted to the construction of foot-deep canals that crisscross the farm, effectively draining rainwater.

Surroundings A game fowl farm should be in an area where factors that would jeopardize the health and welfare of game fowls are absent. As much as possible, it should be far from any other livestock or poultry farm. Game fowls are raised in the open, and the presence of other chickens, poultry species and animals in the adjoining areas may predispose them to diseases and parasites. Disturbances should be the least problem in a farm. Disturbance may mean the farm disturbing a neighborhood, or the neighborhood disturbing a farm. There are people who do not like being disturbed by early morning cockcrows and cackles. On the other hand, game fowls should not be constantly harassed because this affects their behavior. They either become frightened to people or become man-fighters. Hence, a game fowl farm should be far from residential areas. There are local governments that have ordinances requiring a minimum distance of an animal farm from a populated area. More importantly, in commercial scale game fowl production, the farm has to be in an agricultural zone. To know if an area is in this zone, one can go to the municipal or city government office and look at its land use plan. Even in a backyard project, one has to look at the health and welfare of game fowls and the welfare of neighbors. While veterinary help may be obtained to reduce the effect of surroundings on the health and welfare of game fowls, it is still better if the birds are raised in a wholesome environment. The last concern has to do with the raisers or breeders relationship with his neighbors, which has to be as good as possible.

Farm Security

Losing valuable game fowls is trauma to a breeder or farm owner who has special affection for his fowls. These birds are warm to the eyes and are therefore very attractive to persons who steal either to make money out of the game fowls or fight them. Hence, in areas where this problem is known to occur, a sturdy fence high enough to deter thieves is needed. Keeping guard dogs is also a big help in securing a farm. More importantly, only trusted person should manage the farm to avoid serious problems, particularly pilferage.

Room for Expansion While limited by the raisers or breeders financial capability and land available, it is advisable that the area intended for game fowl production is wide enough to allow for future expansions. This makes for a well-planned farm, with all the structures arranged in such a way as to maintain a good environment for the fowls while making sure that the area is optimally utilized. In a farm with a limited area, careful planning should be instituted to accommodate as many game fowls as possible without sacrificing their health and welfare. As much as possible, the fowls should be segregated according to age. The younger ones should not be mixed with or be too close to the more mature ones, as this makes the former vulnerable to diseases and parasites.

Farm Structures Facilities may vary from one game fowl farm to another, since the kind and dimension of each facility depends upon what the breeder wants, particularly in conditioning his stags and cocks. However, there are basic facilities that need to be present in every game fowl farm for it to be able to provide for all the needs of growing and training game fowls. For backyard breeding, the ones that occupy vast spaces may be dispensed with, but structures like cage, mating pen, brooder, flypen and scratching pen are necessary.

Brooder If a farm has a shed with slat or concrete flooring and with a space that could accommodate the number of chicks to be brooded until they are about 1 month of age, this could be used in brooding chicks. It does not matter if the shed is open-sided or walled, as long as it provides for good ventilation. This system is very useful especially when brooding large numbers of game chicks. A brood enclosure for game chicks is exactly the same as that used in brooding commercial chicks. Surrounds made of plain galvanized iron sheets or lawanit that are at least 1 foot high are used to contain chicks and to help preserve heat. The heater may still be incandescent bulbs or, for a more efficient brooding, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)fueled infrared heaters. An LPG heater could efficiently provided the heat needed in brooding 1,000 to 1,500 chicks. A battery brooder is ideal for game fowl production because the chicks confined and, therefore, could not fly out of the brooder. A number of these brooders may be constructed, depending upon the size of the operation. A 3 x 4 x 1 brooder provides a floor space of 12 square feet, and should be enough for 50 chicks brooded for a month.

A battery brooder should be at least 1 foot above the floor, Its front side should have screen wall for good ventilation. This side should be hinged or detachable to facilitate management. The other sides should have solid (plyboard) walls to concentrate the heat. The floor may be bamboo slats or plastic mesh. If bamboo slats, the width of each slat and the distance between slats should not be more than inch. If possible, the underside of the brooder has to have droppings sheet or board to facilitate collection of droppings, and for heat preservation. An incandescent bulb is installed at the top portion of the brooder. This will ensure provision of enough heat for brooding especially during the cold months. The electrical cord should be long enough to reach electrical outlets on the wall or ceiling of the building. The feeders and waterers may be placed inside or outside the brooder. If inside, jar-type waterers and trough feeders are used. If outside, sturdy feeding and watering troughs are installed at the open side of the brooder. A transition area may be provided before brooded birds are released in the range area. This may be a small house that could accommodate all the birds from a battery brooder. The house may even be used as a brooder itself. An incandescent bulb is installed at the mid portion of the house, about 1 foot from the floor. The transition house is elevated, its roof and walls made of local materials to provide a cool environment, its flooring made of bamboo slats and with a ramp to facilitate climbing up of birds to the house. It has a small yard to allow birds to get used to the range. The yard is enclosed with fish net. The house serves to protect birds from the extremes of weather. It is provided with a heat source, possibly an incandescent bulb with hover.

Range Area A range area should provide each bird with at least 2 square meters of roaming space. It should be grassy, to allow growing game birds to take in greens, insects and worms as these provide additional nutrients in their natural state. Trees serve as roosting places for game fowls and help a lot in providing shade during hot days, but these should not be too close to each other as to hinder grass growth.

A country range The range area may be divided into several paddocks, each separated by fish net or any similar fence. One area is used at a time, while the others are rested. This allows for regrowth of vegetation. Since bird droppings are acidic, liming helps a lot in neutralizing the soil, thus preventing its degradation and ensuring regrowth of grasses. A shade made of local materials and with roosts may be constructed in each paddock, where growing game birds could rest at night and during inclement weather.

20 x 20 Pen

The 20 x 20 pen is used in conditioning battlecocks or stags. As the name implies, it is 20 feet long, 20 feet wide and 10 feet high. It has fish net top and sidewalls. It is set in a grassy area within the farm. During conditioning, a feeder and waterer are placed in it. A teepee is placed inside it, where the bird stays when it rests and at night. Running Pen A running pen is a movable structure that may be made of steel with screen top and sides or made of coated wire. The latter type is available in poultry supply shops. This structure is about 2 feet wide, 12 feet long and 3 feet high. It is used in training battlecocks and stags. Traditionally, running pens are set very close to each other, which is not advisable because being very near one another trains a cock to sidle up its opponent. This makes him vulnerable to attacks by his opponent during a cockfight. A running pen made of coated wire that is set on a grassy area Hardening Pen A hardening pen is a movable pen that is about 3 feet wide, 6 feet long and 5 feet high, where maturing males taken directly from the range are housed. Its roof is galvanized iron or any material that could protect the bird from the sun and the rain. It is in this pen where a bird is trained to get used to cording and handling. The number of hardening pens depends upon the extent by which a farm produces stags. The more stags produced, the more pens are needed. It is, therefore, advisable to have as many extra collapsible pens on stock as possible. These pens are available in most poultry supply shops. The advantage of having pens of this type is that they can readily be converted into running pens. Teepee A teepee is a gamecocks resting shed in the cording area. It looks like an inverted V (teepee is the Indian name for their tent-like shelter) and is made either of concrete, wood/plyboard, galvanized iron sheets or any other materials that could serve the purpose. Galvanized iron is the least preferred material since it easily gets hot when under the sun. A teepee is usually 4 feet high, with a 2-foot spread at its base. It has a roosting round wooden bar on top. Therefore, the tie cord of the game bird has to be long enough to enable it to roost on top of the teepee. Normally, a tie cord is 5 feet long. Since the teepee serves as the cocks or stags house while waiting to be scheduled for conditioning, its number has to be directly proportional to the number of stags and cocks produced in the farm. T In cool areas, simplier and cheaper structures can be used in cording gamecocks. One of these is the use of the T, which is simplier version of a teepee. It may be made of bamboo or any similar material. The shed may be made of plywood or a local material like palm leaves. Ts used in cording game cocks

Pit A pit is an integral part of a game fowl farm. It is where battlecocks and stags are sparred. Sparring is part of the conditioning and selection processes. The pit should be as close as possible to a real cockpit, at least in terms of dimension and floor type. This allows birds to get used to sparring in a confined area. The floor is pure garden soil without pebbles or stones to prevent foot injuries during scratching or sparring. It is leveled properly. A pit has to have sufficient lighting. In early morning spars or during gloomy days, the lights are switched on or before sparring. Lighting is considered sufficient if there are no shadows in the pit that might bother cocks during the spar.

Flypen A flypen is a structure with steel, bamboo or wooden framing and with a suitable roof and screen or net sides. It is about 8 feet long, 4 feet wide and 6 to 7 feet high. A roost about 4 or 5 feet high is installed. This exercises the wings of the bird being conditioned. The flypen also doubles as a holding pen. The floor of a flypen may be fine white sand that is about 3 inches thick. Alternatively, rice hull, rice straw or cornhusk may be used as bedding material. Like running and hardening pens, the number of flypens needed in a farm depends upon the number of battlecocks and stags being conditioned. A variation of the flypen is the one that has a sun porch. This type allows the breeder to go on with his conditioning routine for his battlecocks and stags regardless of the weather condition. This type of house, though, needs a wider space than the usual flypen. Another variation of the flypen is the combination flypen and resting pen. The difference between this and the usual flypen is in the construction of the structure. The combination pen may be a semi-gable type house with screen or net sides. Its inner features are similar to those of the usual flypen. Scratching Pen A scratching pen is a square structure measuring 3 square feet and about 2 feet high. It may be made of coated wire, which is available in poultry supply shops, steel or wood with screen or fishnet top and sides. It is placed on the ground with rice straw, rice hull or cornhusk bedding, which the cock scratches in search of grains. A scratching pen of the type available in most poultry supply shops Nests/Trap nests Ordinary nests that are either made of local materials or plyboard with nest pad (rice hull) or with plastic screen floor may be used if eggs are not segregated according to mating combinations. Even in pen mating, the only way to identify which hen laid which egg is through the installation of trap nests. A trap nest is a nest with a trap door, which automatically shuts with the entry of the hen. Once inside, the hen steps on the trap door, shutting it. The hen could only come out of the nest when the caretaker collects the eggs.

Resting House Battlecocks and stags are rested before they are fought. This is done using a resting house, a specially built house within a game fowl farm that provides a cool but quiet environment for battlecocks and stags that are scheduled for fights. A resting house is mosquito proof-it is well screened. Resting pens measuring about 2 x 2 x 2 feet are installed inside it. Each pen has a window for feed and water, which are placed outside. Curtains are placed between pens so the cocks being rested do not see each other. Individual Cock Cages Individual cock cages are similar in dimension and type to resting cages, only that the former are placed in other areas or sheds in the farm. These cages are particularly useful to cockers who maintain a number of battlecocks but who do not have enough space to afford the other structures needed. Farm Equipment Water Pump Water is a very essential commodity in a game fowl farm. Hence, a reliable water supply is necessary to ensure that it is available anytime. Water supplied to the game birds should be suitable for drinking (potable). Even if the area has water mains, it may still be necessary to have a backup source of clean water. In an area known to have good quality water in its aquifer, a water pump would serve the purpose. There are two kinds of electric water pump: the manomatic and the jetmatic. Of the two, the manomatic is preferable in small and medium sized game fowl farms, since it can be manually operated during power outages. However, the jetmatic pump is better and more efficient in ensuring ample water supply in big game fowl farms. Artificial Incubator Cabinet type. The cabinet type incubator is a forced-draft incubator, usually with semiautomatic or automatic egg turning mechanism. It is called forced-draft because it has paddles or fans that circulate warm air, resulting in an even temperature distribution inside it. It usually has a built-in dry and wet bulb thermometer to facilitate daily monitoring of temperature and relative humidity. Small cabinet type incubators Cabinet type incubators come in various capacities, ranging from a few hundred eggcapacity to several thousand egg-capacity. Eggs are set in a cabinet incubator with their blunt end up. They are initially exposed to 99.5oF (37.5oC) temperature, which is lowered to 98.5oF (37oC) at day 18. Relative humidity is maintained at 86oF to 92oF. Table Type. A table type incubator is usually an electric still-air incubator. That is, heat is distributed inside the machine by radiation. As such, it could only accommodate a single setting or hatching tray. If two trays are stacked one above the other, the eggs on

the top tray will be exposed to a very high temperature, while those underneath will be exposed to a low temperature. This will result in different incubation lengths or death of most embryos. Presently, there are models of this kind of incubator that run on LPG. There is also the good old kerosene-fed table type incubator that is as efficient. If electricity supply is not stable in an area, or if there is no electricity at all, then these models would allow one to artificially incubate game fowl eggs as efficiently as the use of electric incubators. A turbo table electric still-air incubator A table type incubator is manually operated. In most models, temperature is adjusted using a knob, the effect of which is observed through a thermometer inside the machine. Most do not have wet bulb thermometer to monitor relative humidity. In most models, eggs are set on their sides. There are some, though, with wire trays attached to a knob for egg turning outside the machine. In these incubators, eggs are set with their blunt end up. Homemade Incubator. A table type incubator is simple in design and, therefore, can be made right at home. Its frame is made of 2 x 2 lumber and its body is made of marine plywood. The front side has glass door to facilitate monitoring during incubation. The interior of a home made incubator.It has an incandescent bulb, thermostat. The water pans are underneath the setting tray. The size of the incubator depends upon what is desired or needed. A large table type incubator can accommodate up to 1,000 eggs per setting, so long as the setting/hatching tray is designed in such a way as to allow for semi-automatic turning. This means that eggs are set upright, with their blunt end up. Holes are made at the bottom side of the incubator box to allow for air exchange. This is important since embryos are living organisms that need oxygen and give off carbon dioxide. Without air vents, there will be no air exchange, with carbon dioxide accumulating inside the machine, resulting in embryonic death. The setting or hatching tray should be elevated from the bottom side of the incubator. The bottom side is where is water pan is placed to maintain good relative humidity during incubation. The water pan is preferably made of aluminum or stainless steel to eliminate rust, deformation and leakage problems. The water pan should be as wide as possible to ensure ample relative humidity during incubation. The heater may be electric bulbs or heating elements. If electric bulbs are preferred, about six bulb sockets should be installed at the inner top portion of the incubator. These are fitted with light bulbs. A thermostat is also installed to regulate temperature. Alternatively, if there is no thermostat, few adjustments have to be made reducing the number of bulbs or altering the wattage of the bulbs before the right temperature is attained. The same procedure is followed in reducing the temperature by 1oF (0.50oC) to obtain the right hatching temperature. Once these are established, the incubator is ready for use. If heating elements are to be used, these also need a thermostat and the services of an electrician to install them. Most raisers prefer to use heating elements to ensure the provision of adequate incubation temperature.

Setting and Hatching Trays Setting and hatching trays are not equipment themselves but parts of an incubator. The setting trays used in incubating game fowl eggs are the same as the ones used in incubating eggs of commercial chickens. The hatching trays, however, have to be of a special type to allow the breeder to separate chicks according to mating combinations. This is a very important aspect of game fowl breeding, since a breeder cannot afford to assume that a bird belongs to a particular bloodline when at hatching, the batch where the said brood fowl came from got mixed up. Such a problem is likely to produce a disastrous result, especially when the breeder sells his game fowls as brood stocks or battlecocks. The pedigree tray should have the same dimensions as that of the setting tray for it to fit into the incubator. It has to have sturdy wire screen partitions to separate eggs according to mating combinations. The size of the partitions depends upon the number of eggs likely to be produced from each mating combination. Hence, the hatching tray may be divided into two or more partitions. Each partition should have its own hinged screen top with a simple locking mechanism. This allows the operator to take out chicks from one partition without having to worry about these chicks getting mixed with those from the other partitions. Alternatively, pedigree boxes with lid made of -inch wire mesh may be used. The size of each box should be big enough to contain a clutch of eggs laid by a brood hen. These boxes are placed on the setting tray during the hatching stage. Feeders and Waterers In artificial brooding, plastic trough feeders with guard and jar type waterers are ideal. The trough feeder prevents feed spillage while the jar type waterer prevents chicks from getting drowned in the drinking water. Since most of the more mature game fowls are on range or on the cordwalk, earthen or rubber feeders and waterers are normally preferred, because these are durable and stable (they do not easily topple). Plastic feeders and waterers with wide base, which are as stable, are also available in poultry supply shops. In individual cock cages, the choice of feeders and waterers is limitless, with some making use of readily available materials like empty plastic containers and cut bamboo tubes. Manpower Requirement A family can run a backyard scale game fowl farm. A bigger farm, however, has to have regular workers to attend to all the facets of game fowl production and training/conditioning. The rule of thumb in a game fowl farm is that one caretaker is needed for every 100 cocks in the cording area. This caretaker is also responsible for feeding and providing drinking water to the birds. He also maintains the cording area. A breeder and an assistant take care of the breeding work, including hatching of eggs and marking of chicks. Breeding work includes pairing of brood fowls, daily collection, sorting and marking of eggs. Fumigation and incubation of eggs and, if done in the farm, pedigree keeping. Hence, he and his assistant may only be effective in managing up to 100 brood hens. A caretaker is usually assigned full time in the brooding and growing of game fowls. His work includes feeding, watering and the day-to-day management of the birds in the

brooders and on range. If there are two or more range areas, he sees to it that these are used in rotation to allow for regrowth of grasses. A full-time conditioner and an assistant tend the birds being conditioned. Due to the sensitivity of the conditioning work, the duo may only be effective in attending to the needs and the training of a maximum of 30 battlecocks. A general maintenance man may be needed to attend to the rest of the work in the farm not covered by the other personnel. These include, among others, cleaning works, repairs and assistance to the breeder or conditioner whenever needed. Every game fowl farm needs a veterinarian or a caretaker trained to diagnose, prevent and treat common game fowl diseases and parasites. A veterinarian may be hired on a full or part-time basis, depending on farm size and the owners decision.