Secrets of Vaccination in Poultry Production
Vaccination is no substitute for effective management. One of the most effective protective actions for your birds is the prevention of pathogens infecting your birds in the first place. A greater focus on proper general flock management, including intensive biosecurity and sanitation programs can be very effective, but will also not guarantee a disease-free flock.
Vaccination can be effective in reducing clinical disease but be aware that exposed birds may still get infected and may “shed” pathogens (they are carriers). In general, vaccination before the actual infection occurs in a flock is the best means of protection.
During the rearing period you can make or break your birds. If you want your birds to become long-living, top performers, you must make sure that they have had the proper preparations from day 1 onwards.
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Vaccinations at the hatchery and during the rearing period is also more efficient, more effective, and most vaccines are recommended to be administered during early life. Please carefully consult the product labels and contact your local veterinarians for assistance.
We recommend the following when administering vaccines:
- Always follow the instructions of the vaccine manufacturers when storing, handling and administering the vaccines
- Keep a record of the vaccination program
- Vitamins can be administered a day before vaccination and three days after to minimize stress, but never mix drinking water vaccinations and vitamins
- Only vaccinate healthy birds, isolate sick birds from your flock
- In the case of ongoing antibiotic flock treatment, consult your veterinarian to decide whether to withdraw the antibiotic treatment prior to vaccination
- Make sure the crew is trained in proper vaccine administration
- For vaccines administered via the drinking water, make sure the drinking system is clean and make sure you follow the minimal required drinking time as stated by the vaccine manufacturer. Discard the drinking water afterwards, wash the drinkers and provide fresh water for your birds
- Live vaccines administered via the drinking water can be destroyed by water sanitizers.
- Make sure that the vaccines get properly distributed over the entire poultry house when administered via the water or spraying
- Monitor the result of the vaccinations (vaccine take, profiling)