Rainbow Rooster Production And Management - Eastern Mirror
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Rainbow Rooster Production and Management

By EMN Updated: Apr 06, 2024 11:31 pm

Rainbow Rooster

The Rainbow rooster is a dual-purpose animal which can be raised with low-input and is multi-coloured chicken suitable for backyard poultry farming. It has been developed by INDBRO who got venture capital funding from Ministry of Agriculture through NABARD to set up breeding program to breed “Low Input Birds” in 2005.

These birds have been distributed by government agencies to low income families under National Livelihood Mission, a Government of India Initiative to provide additional income to the poor families and provide Nutrition security in the rural areas by augmenting chicken and egg production.

Characteristics of Rainbow Rooster birds

These birds are dual purpose breeds which are suitable for rearing in most climates and can tolerate both heat and cold, used for meat and egg purpose, have large body size, reaches body weight of 2 kg in 8 weeks of age and are not broody.

Age at Maturity is more than 160 days, lays about 160-180 eggs in 72 weeks , eggs weigh around 60 gms which is larger than local fowls , FCR is around 2.23 and mortality rate is below 2%.

 Rainbow roosters are highly resistance to diseases and are suitable for free-range systems where feeding cost is very less and can be taken as business on large scale.

Management of Rainbow Rooster

1. Selection of chicks: Day old quality chicks procured from reputed hatcheries should be used for rearing so that the bird’s performance is optimum.

2. Points to remember when new chicks are introduced:

1.            Preheat the room and stabilise the temperature and humidity.

2.            Arrange the equipment in such a way that enables chicks to reach feed and water easily.

3.            Cover the litter materials with thick paper or carton for 3-4 days so that the young chicks do not pick up litter materials.

4.            Provide water mixed with glucose/electrolytes at the arrival in brooder house. Provide feeds after 1-2 hours.

5.            Continue to monitor the chick movement to find out whether the temperature inside the house is ok or not.

3.Housing: The birds can be housed initially in a brooder house for 3  weeks where the following points should be kept in mind.

Brooding of Chicks:

Brooding: Brooding is the period from hatching until supplemental heat is no longer needed. Which  means the time period that the chicks need to be kept inside or with a heat lamp/bulb, which is generally somewhere between three to eight weeks.

Points to remember while brooding:

•             Light: Proper and continuous light is required  so that young chicks can located the feeder and drinker

•             Temperature: For providing required brooding temperature inside the brooder heat lamps, heaters are hung so that there is equal distribution of heat in the brooded area. temperature requirements depend upon the age and weather condition, however on the first day to start with the centre temperature should be maintained at 90 to 95 degrees F and can reduced by 5 degrees F each week. Brooding is generally done for 3-4 weeks however in some cases it can be extended upto 7-8 weeks.

•             Ventilation & Humidity: Ventilation is required for prevention of ammonia fumes in the brooder house. Ventilation and humidity are very closely related as high ventilation lowers the humidity and low ventilation causes humidity to become too high, creating a soggy environment. It is easy to maintain in small stocks but difficult to maintain in larger flock size.

•             Bedding:  Selection of suitable bedding materials is very important in poultry farming ad especially I brooder house. In case of small flocks the bedding materials may be changed to prevent mould, smell and disease. Generally bedding materials consists of rice husk and saw dust.

•             Feed: proper feeding and balanced nutrition is very much required during the early life of Chicks for proper growth. Pre- starter and starter ration should be fed. When the birds arrive in brooder house the litter materials should either be covered with cartoons or thick paper so that the chicks do not pick the litter materials. Feeds should be spread on the paper for 2-3 days so that the young chicks can learn to pick up the feeds and along with it feeders should arranged so that the chicks can be fed properly.

•             Water: Provision for clean water should be made and fed to the chicks through drinkers. Water should be changed  twice daily to reduce faecal, food or bedding contamination. The drinkers should be cleaned daily to prevent formation of moulds and bacterial growth.

•             Mortality: Mortality around 1-2 % is generally considered ok, however mortality beyond 2 % should be checked and appropriate action should be initiated.

Housing after brooding:

However, once out of the brooding house the birds can be reared as per the purpose and requirement of the owner like intensive or in free range. The house should be constructed in such a way that direct sunlight doesn’t fall on the side walls  and long axis of the house should be in east to west direction. The birds should be provided with a space of up-to 1.5 sq. ft. per bird in intensive system. The litter materials should be turned upside down after every 2-3 days and if required more litter materials should be added so that moisture content of the litter can be maintained. Proper ventilation should be maintained and mechanism for controlling the temperature should be there. For laying birds egg nest should be made in advance (20-25 weeks) and should be made in the corners in case of deep litter system.


Feed is a major component of the total cost of poultry production. Feed should be formulated to give correct balance of energy, proteins and amino acids, minerals and vitamins to allow optimum growth and performance. The feed must provide the requirements of all the essential and non – essential amino acids. Minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, sodium potassium, chloride, etc. are very essential for proper growth of the birds. Zinc and selenium improves feathering and immune response of the birds. Young birds should be fed with pre-starter/ starter ration containing 20-24% protein upto 3 weeks of age which provides building blocks for the maturing bones, muscles and cardio- vascular systems. Feeding is done throughout and full choice is given to birds. After three weeks the birds should be fed with grower feed containing 18-20 % protein. Probiotics, vitamins and minerals should be added in the feed for proper growth, less occurrence of disease and for obtaining good quality eggs. When Rainbow rooster is raised as broiler chicks then they should be fed with broiler feed, when raised as layer then layer feed and when in open/ forage system then are kept open for foraging.

5.Health Management:

Generally, disease is introduced by people, employees working at farm, veterinary professionals or through newly introduced chicks which it might have inherited from hatchery itself. Hence, disease prevention and control are very important for which the following points should be remembered.

a.All the equipment’s in poultry shed should be cleaned and disinfected properly.

b. Visitors should not be allowed.

c. Proper vaccination scheduled should be maintained

d. Any birds showing signs of disease should be taken out, culled and immediately informed to veterinarians.

e. Medications as advised by veterinarians should be continued till birds recover.

6. Vaccination Schedule:

While vaccinating the birds, please check the date of manufacturing and how it was transported, maintain cold chain for transporting and vaccinate the birds as required.

Age in daysVaccineRoute
1Mareks diseaseSubcutaneous
1-7Lasota/ RDOcculonasal drops
14-18IBDOcculonasal drops
24LasotaOcculonasal drops, Spray/ drinking water

7.Record Keeping:

It is one of the important aspects of poultry farming which acts as source for monitoring and evaluation. Equipment, labour, feed procured and intake, medicine and vaccination record and sale proceed register should be maintained which will help in analysing the profitability of the farm.

Dr. Rakesh Kumar Chaurasia

Principal Scientist and Head

KVK, Zunheboto

Nagaland University

By EMN Updated: Apr 06, 2024 11:31:16 pm
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