Aviagen EMEA School Aimed to Optimise Hatchery Performance

TURKEY - The first Aviagen Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) School of 2015 took place in Istanbul, recently, with the Hatchery and Incubation Management module focused on ‘Optimising Hatchery Performance.’
calendar icon 4 March 2015
clock icon 4 minute read

Now in its third year, it was the first time this module has been held in Turkey, where it welcomed 37 students from 23 countries including Canada, Colombia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, Hungary, France, Spain and Japan.

The module aimed to strike a balance between classroom learning and practical demonstrations was led by Aviagen® Global Manager Hatchery Development and Support, Dinah Nicholson.

The focus for the first day was on ‘Fertility and Hatching Egg Care’ which included workshops run by two of the Aviagen Incubation Specialists. Eddy Van Lierde asked the students to consider the range of things that a hatchery can influence – and those that they can actually control. Later, Dr Tolga Erkus ran a case study workshop, inviting students to come up with a plan to investigate causes of an egg handling problem. The students also undertook a practical session to identify fertility in un-incubated eggs.

Day two looked at ‘The Science of Incubation’ where Dr Erkus gave an insight into Humidity and Calibrations and Dr Nirada Leksrisompong covered the effects of incubation temperature and turning. The focus on the third and fourth days was on ‘Incubation Conditions’ and covered a plethora of topics with sessions looking at data handling, hatchery design, chick transport and investigating hatch failure, ventilation, air requirements and the influence of incubation upon subsequent broiler performance.

Dr Nicholson commented on the School venue: “Turkey is a country with a strong poultry industry, supported by several research centres of excellence so was an ideal location for the module. We were delighted to hold the School here, where there are so many people active in incubation practice and research.

“We enjoyed the process of putting together a programme that would help everyone, no matter what sort of incubators they have, and help them build their expertise before tackling the challenge of the final case study.”

Dr Tolga Erkus added: “The School is a tried and tested team effort with the success lying in the use of classroom learning, practical sessions and problem solving exercises. Aviagen’s Hatchery Support Team was enhanced by other experts in aspects of hatchery management and support, providing a strong variety of insight for students.”

For the final exam, each student had to solve a real-life hatchery problem from a dossier of data typical of a modern hatchery.

The top-scoring students in the exam were:

  • 1st place: Saulius Baltrusaitis (Annyalla Chicks Ltd)
  • 2nd place: Michelle Boon (Annyalla Chicks Ltd) and
  • 3rd place: David Macarthur (Faccenda Foods Ltd).

Ms Boon commented: “The course for me not only refreshed fundamental ideas that can often get overlooked in the day to day running of the hatchery, but it also provided new and up to date research from recent studies, and covered a wide range of topics to help manage, problem solve and analyse any issues you face. Everyone was very friendly and the evenings gave a good opportunity for making contacts and sharing procedures and experiences.”

Two of the other students reflected on their experience of the school.

Melanie Fernandez said: “Great interactive way of learning! You will definitely go home with a new bank of information, ideas and views coming from the lectures, practical sessions and shared experiences by experts and co-practitioners.”

Jose Ignacio Sanchez added: “This course exceeded my expectations with an excellent balance of theory and practice. I am looking forward to putting it all into practice.”

The next Aviagen EMEA Production Management School, Breeder Module, will take place in Edinburgh between 30 August and 4 September 2015. Visit www.aviagen.com for full details.

The 37 students at the School in Istanbul
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