Hens Welsummer: description, maintenance and care
Chickens form the basis of many farms. Regardless of the size of the farm, meat and egg breeds are in greatest demand due to their versatility. One of the main representatives of such breeds is the Welsumer chickens.
The breed owes its name to a Dutch village called Welsum. In 1900, the local indigenous hens introduced the genetic material of the Malay chicken - a fighting animal - to increase the weight of the hens and thus increase the amount of meat obtained during their slaughter. Did you know? Breeders also crossed the newly bred breed with native chickens - this allowed them to further increase their egg productivity. A little later, the genetic material of Dorking chickens was added so that the hens would give more eggs. Then hens were grafted with the genetic material of such breeds as Rhode Island and Barneveld.
Outwardly, the Welsumers are characterized by a cylindrical body with horizontal landing and dense plumage. The chest and back are wide and long, the chest is rounded and bent forward. The tail is at an obtuse angle and has an average width. The head is small with no plumage on the face.
The scallop is characterized by the regularity of the teeth, the beard is rounded and small in size. Paws are also small with hips protruding from the plumage.
|Plumage||Thick, a lot of fluff|
Despite the presence of fighting breed genes, the Welsumer chickens show calm and genuine interest in the world around them. Aggressiveness they are extremely rare, fearless and calmly relate to the fact that people pick them up. Important! Roosters at a young age are aggressive and in order to avoid fights between them, roosters should be given more space.
Advantages and disadvantages
- Welsumer chickens are very easy to care for, do not require special equipment / skills;
- chickens are practically not susceptible to disease due to good stamina and strong immunity;
- have high performance;
- have been eggs since 6 months;
- egg-laying year-round.
- due to the lack of instinct of incubation, the use of other chickens or an incubator is necessary;
- roosters are characterized by pugnacity.
Maintenance and care
Due to its unpretentiousness, the Welsumers can do with the presence of basic amenities - food, food and a roof over your head. Nevertheless, there are still some requirements for the conditions of their detention.
Chicken coop requirements
When planning a chicken coop for Welsumer chickens, it is necessary to calculate the space according to the 1 m² formula for 3-4 chicken. The chicken coop needs good lighting, as it contributes to the fertility of the laying hens. The room should not be damp and good ventilation is needed - otherwise the animals will be sick. The floor is covered with peat or sawdust.
Patio for walks
Since Welsumer belongs to breeds requiring walking, hens must have a yard for walking, and in the absence of such a cage.
The floor is covered with hay - this will prevent freezing of paws in the winter. There should also be no dampness in the courtyard. At temperatures below 10 degrees below zero, walks of chickens should last no longer than 90 minutes.
Feeding troughs, drinking bowls, zone baths
Kuels Welsumer is suitable for the most ordinary feeders and drinking bowls. It is better to arrange them in such a way that direct sunlight does not fall on them or fall to a minimum. Another important element is the presence of zones filled with sand or ash, in which hens can take baths.
Shedding and egg laying break
Like other chickens, Welsumer is characterized by seasonal molting. It occurs in the fall and lasts from 4 to 8 weeks. This period is accompanied by a break in egg production.
Herd replacement planned
After 3 years in chickens, Welsumer begins to decline in productivity. Together with good health, fast maturation and high endurance, chickens with the onset of this age are slaughtered, making up the herd due to the cultivation of chickens. Thus, the replacement of the herd occurs every 3 years.
What to feed
Another issue that often arises for chicken owners is the issue of nutrition.
Hens Welsumer is quite unpretentious in food, which greatly simplifies the process of feeding them. However, feeding with mash, mixed feed, greens, tops and grass is the most preferable - the last three serve as an important source of vitamins. Important! When the chicken is 48 weeks old, the number of meals is temporarily increased to 4 times. Food leftovers are also consumed. Feeding is done twice a day - in the morning and in the evening; during the day, during the walking of the chickens, they eat grass and insects in the courtyard, thus arranging for themselves a third meal. In winter, it is not available, so chickens are fed three times. Mandatory is constant unhindered access to water.
The first days after birth, chickens need to be fed up to 6 times a day. The most optimal feeding includes boiled eggs, millet, finely chopped corn, nettle, alfalfa and onions, finely chopped grass can also be used. The main sources of protein for young livestock are low-fat cottage cheese and reverse.