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University of Maryland Extension Delmarva Broiler Farm Water Usage Jennifer Timmons (mdchick@umd.edu)mdchick@umd.edu www.mdchick.umd.edu

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University of Maryland Extension Acknowledgements Richard Nottingham Jennifer Rhodes

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University of Maryland Extension Introduction Ground water is 81-100% source of all drinking water on the Eastern Shore. Demand for water is expected to increase by more than 20% between 2000 and 2030. Water Use Permits: – Maryland and Virginia: greater than 10,000 gallons/day – Delaware: greater than 50,000 gallons/day

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University of Maryland Extension Introduction Bird water consumption is somewhat easy to predict. Evaporative cooling system is harder to predict.

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University of Maryland Extension Introduction Flock water usage varies depending on a many factors. – Age of bird – House density – Outside temperature and relative humidity – Type of cooling system – Evaporative cooling set temperatures

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University of Maryland Extension Introduction University of Georgia monitored water usage of a 50 ft X 560 ft broiler house in Athens, GA (Czarick and Fairchild, 2009). Evaporative cooling system used between 40,000 and 45,000 gallons during the summer. Evaporative cooling system used between 10,000 and 20,000 gallons during the spring.

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University of Maryland Extension Background of Study Water meters were placed on evaporative cooling pad system (recirculation system) of 15 broiler houses. Drinker consumption data also collected (10 houses). Data collection started April 2008. Flocks were placed at various times throughout the study.

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University of Maryland Extension Background of Study Average house size: 29,708 ft 2 Average broiler capacity: 40,057 birds Average flock age: 52 days Assume 5 ½ flocks/year = 286 production days (52 days X 5.5 flocks)

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University of Maryland Extension Results (7/2009) Average gallons of water used by evaporative cooling pad system for one flock: – 533 gallons/day/house Average gallons of water consumed for one flock: – 1,598 gallons/day/house Therefore total gallons used/day/house for one flock = 2,131 gallons/day/house

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University of Maryland Extension Results (7/2009) Estimated total gallons used for 5 ½ flocks (286 days) in one house = – 609,466 gallons (286 d X 2,131 gallons) Average gallons used per day in one house for 1 year (365 days) = – 1,670 gallons (609,466 gallons ÷ 365 days) Average gallons per ft 2 = – 0.0562 gallons/ft 2 (1,670 gallons ÷ 29,708 ft 2 )

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University of Maryland Extension How much water do I use on my farm per year? Example: – Five houses (33,600 ft 2 ) – Total ft 2 = 168,000 ft 2 (33,600 ft 2 X 5 houses) – Total average gallons used/day = 9,442 gallons water/day (168,000 ft 2 X 0.0562 gallons/ft 2 )

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University of Maryland Extension Questions

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