Vaccination: a way to reduce the consumption of antibiotics in poultry

The outbreaks of infectious diseases, especially infectious bronchitis, infectious bursitis, Newcastle disease, and others decreases the overall flock health, in some instances animals must be culled or it might increase the necessity to use antibiotics because of secondary bacterial infection activation. Vaccination is the most effective animal health intervention to prevent dangerous infectious disease outbreaks, decrease overall mortality, economic losses, and antibiotic consumption.

Vaccines in poultry can be applied via drinking water, food, spray, or injection. To ensure a vaccine will provide a desired effect, they have to be stored properly based on the manufacture’s recommendations.

If vaccines are administered via the drinking water line, the line has to be flushed in order to reduce bacterial biofilms and algae formation on its walls. In most cases, appropriate water/vaccine dilution has to be acquired based on the producer’s recommendations. When the correct vaccine dilution for a particular group is prepared, it can be added to an automatic dispenser which is connected to the drinking line. Ensure that the birds do drink the vaccine at the time specified in instruction. For vaccine application via spray attenuate (dilute) the vaccine according to producer or your veterinarian’s instructions and according to your herd needs. Place the prepared working solution in the nebulizer. To improve vaccine correct intake, adjust the droplet size to reach the target tissues. The vaccine should be sprayed systematically and evenly so that each chick receives its dose, but without causing undue stress to the chickens. Check broiler health status after vaccination.