s Hatcheries have offered started pullets for years oh a small scale. When cage laying systems started growing, demand for a more constant source of replacements grew rapidly. Then other' producers became interested and specialized growers provided the birds in larger volume. - Save as much as 25% of your losses caused ,by unprotected , silage — losses evaluated at $2 to $2.50 per ton. These savings., are yours with heavy-duty, Sunlight-resistant Black GER-PAK Polyethylene Film — at a low cost averaging 27<* per square yard. (Each yard covers a ton of silage.!) And with virtually 100% edible silage you avoid the work and time needed to remove the spoilage! 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GER-PAK Film, Write today 40 Gering Agricultural Service, Department RG3 _ _, „ ,,, , , , ANl? neWrdevelapfiients in agriculture Ve's^ctfi^^ beginnings., 'Started pul*l lets*doinOt fit into this picture* Ittatcheries] haVe'offered started pullets forbears in"as smairway* .The new/thing,is,a trend to-] .ward, individual farmers specializing in the; field of raising started pulletsl 4 t \ The growth^of^this business started] with eagejayers. In these operations pro-] ducers started culling rriore closely on a \ production basis. With this they needed a constant source of ready-io-lay replace-; ments to keep their cages full. Poultry, specialists have long agreed that'raising flock replacements is 'one of the most inefficient operation* on the typical! farm. Operators in a New York study re- i vealed that costs ranged from $1.30 to $2.30 to raise a pullet to 16 weeks of age. Most pullet producers sell their birds for about $1.80-$i.90.- These close-to-average costs are creating tremendous interest among egg producers who normally raise their own replacements. " Know Your Operation Before you decide to use started pullets there are several things you need to know about your operation. First, determine what it actually costs you in "housing, feed, labor and so forth to raise a pullet to laying age. Then consider whether you can make more money by using your brooding time and facilities for egg production. Another thing to consider is the quality of the pullet you produce. High quality birds that will produce 200 or more e per year are the pullet growers' bread and • butter. And if you're like most egg pro, ducers, you'll tend to neglect your chicks' " and devote most of your time to the laying ; flock. 1 Such neglect cannot help you produce top-notch pullets." Most of-the decision of whether to try •* started pullets will be based on the econ, omy of the deal. Just remember,, though, ; the original cost of the birds, compared to, homegrown .pullets, won't tell the whole story. - ", : ;•"" .Know your Grower If your cost, figures .indicate you could benefit from buying started pullets, you ,' should still'.proceed with caution. ,It -is most important to inake contact with the 1 ' grower and with, people knowing him. Find out what kind of operator the pullet grower is. You'll want to-deal "with a 'reputable businessman and a good poultry- man. Check with other flock owners who are using his pullets. This can give you an indication ,of how .the grower's birds may perform for you. . There are several things you should check concerning the grower's "management. Find out what methods he uses in feeding, the strain of birds he'raises and the general sanitation, and vaccination programs used. ' •"'<'', „,' Before you place an order for started pullets you'll want to plan your" operation well. Try to anticipate your replacement needs at least five months in advance. This will give the grower time to fit your order into his growing schedule, You'll want a written contract-if you decide to try started pullets. Bp certain that it includes provisions .that allow you to inspect the growing pullets/ Also"it should state the method of delivery, the age and number of pullets that will be de** i livered and the date of delivery, Make doubly sure that payment methods, rates, and provisions for handling your complaints are clearly staged in any agreement.
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