Heat Stress and Egg Production: How High Temperatures Affects Layers?

Heat stress is a major challenge in layer production, especially during the hot summer months. It occurs when birds face difficulty in achieving a balance between body heat production and heat loss. This imbalance can lead to several health issues and production losses.

 ⬆ Mortality                   

 ⬇ Gut health                 

 ⬇ Body weight            

 ⬇ Immunity                 

 ⬇ Egg weight                 

 ⬇ Albumin height      

 ⬇ Feed intake


 ⬇ Egg production.

 ⬇ Egg shell quality

Mitigating strategies to reduce heat stress

 1. Drinker system management -

  • Availability of drinking water
  • Sufficient water flow (> 70 ml/minute/nipple drinker)
  • Sufficient drinker space
  • Additional drinkers for floor-reared flocks
  • Keeping water temperature below 25°C
  • Flushing water lines during the afternoon
  • Vitamin and electrolyte supplements in the drinking water
  • Installation of water tank inside the shed
  • Pandhal and whitewash for water tank which is outside
  • Underground water pipeline
  • Covering of pipeline which is not underground


2. Ventilation and Farm management

  • Do not disturb the birds during the hottest time of the day
  • Adjust work schedules and lighting programs
  • Management practices should be done in the early morning hours (beak trimming, transfer and vaccinations)
  • Use foggers and misters – Adjust time on the basis of temperature and humidity.
  • Using roof sprinklers during times of extremely high temperature
  • Do not run the feeders during the hottest time of the day
  • Increase the movement of air in open houses with stir fans - minimum velocity of 1.8–2.0 meters/ second
  • Do not overstock cages
  • Transport birds early in the morning or at night.

3. Lighting Program

  • Adjust the lighting program to provide more morning light hours - to encourage feed consumption
  • Use a midnight feeding of 1–2 hours to provide an additional feeding
  • Lower the intensity of light during the hottest time - to reduce bird activity.

4. Nutritional Management

  • Avoid feeding times during hot periods of the day
  • Feed distribution at early morning (1/3) & evening time (2/3)
  • Feed type – mash /crumble - With crumble diets, presentation of large particle limestone
  • Feed should be made denser with nutrients, vitamins, and minerals
  • Usage of vegetable or highly digestible protein sources
  • Formulate to digestible amino acid targets
  • Usage of Fats or oils to adjust feed energy
  • Vit. C , Vit. E and betaine
  • Feed should be denser with nutrients, vitamins, and minerals
  • Use of Maduramycin as an anticoccidials
  • Dietary electrolyte balance (molar equivalence of Na+ + K+ – Cl-) - <250 mEq/kg
  • Intellibond ZMC

What are phytogenics and how do they work in poultry nutrition?

Phytogenics are bioactive components from plants that function as defense mechanisms or signaling compounds. Due to co-evolution, phytogenics can have physiological effects on animals through acting upon molecular receptors along the gastrointestinal tract.

These receptors are conserved across species and are functionally important; when activated they modulate animal immunity, physiology, metabolism, etc.  When used at the right dosage, phytogenics can be deployed as management tools to support the animal in combating many of the challenges faced in livestock production systems

What is the importance of minerals for poultry health & production?

Minerals are crucial for metabolic functions of poultry which helps to support growth & development, enzyme activities, immune functions, health & the reproductive performance during poultry production.

Supplementation of adequate quantity of minerals is critical because large number of feed ingredient used in poultry feed are not having enough mineral composition & bioavailability to recure from the mineral losses during egg and meat production, growth as well as excretion.

Mineral deficiency challenges lead to poor production & health of the birds. That’s why it is advised by nutritionist to add require amount of both major & trace minerals in all phases of poultry feed.

In the current scenario of the uncertain prices and availability of raw materials, what factors should be considered during grain storage? Does grain treatment help grain storage for longer intervals?

Storage of grains in silos has become important in today’s scenario for greater time lengths due to uncertainties of bad crop affecting unavailability, high prices of raw material etc. The major alterations to stored grain that can be attributed to fungal invasion include discoloration of either the germ or embryo or the entire seed or kernel, mustiness, potential production of harmful toxins, biochemical changes within the grain, and loss in weight and nutritive value. These changes may occur before the mold becomes visible to the naked eye. Fungi are common throughout nature; factors like moisture content of grain, temperature and length of storage plays a part in mold development.

Nutrient loss due to molds is captured in the table:





Good Corn​




Moldy Corn​




Nutrient loss​




Nutrient loss (%)




Treatment with Fylax Forte HC Liq prolongs shelf life of corn, grain, feed ingredients by reducing mould risk​ by preventing moisture loss , maintain less water activity and reducing mould count .