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Modular System for Transporting Spent Hens


February 17, 2012
By Jim Knisley


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February 17, 2012  – Hand to hand transfers are no longer part of the transportation system for spent fowl in Ontario.

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February 17, 2012  – Hand to hand transfers are no longer part of the transportation system for spent fowl in Ontario.

A modular transportation system has been developed for Maple Lodge that utilizes carts to move the birds from their cages to the trucks, Al Dam, the provincial poultry specialist at OMAFRA said at a Poultry Industry Council producer update in London.

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Dam said the change, which took effect Feb. 13, improves animal welfare and has undergone several months of trials. Under the old system, the hens were carried to crates. Under the new system, a small trolley is rolled into the barn and the hens placed in plastic drawers on the trolley.

The trolley is eight drawers high and 48 inches deep, 18 inches wide and 78 inches tall and taller than a regular pullet cart. Each drawer is almost the same area as a chicken crate.

To accommodate the new system a staging area will be needed at the farm to ensure safety. A loaded cart and a man will weight about 1,000 lbs. so the loading dock must be able to handle the load.

Modified pullet trailers have been developed that will move the carts from the farm to Maple Lodge for processing. The modified trailers can carry 480 crates compared to a regular truck that carries 784 crates.


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