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PROFITABLE POULTRY CULTURE. BY RALPH R ALLEN, Lecturer to the Herts County Council; I Editor of Monthly Hints on Poultry, &c. (All rights reserved.) The serial article, A Successful Breeding Season," is suspended this week, owing to the necessity of special advice concerning management during the hot weather. Overcrowding and vermin are the rocks from which poultry-keepers must steer clear during the present montb. Considering the former, you probably have more bead of poultry to-day than at any period of the year you have completed your hatching operations, your early chickens are three-parts grown; in fact, many are approaching maturity, whilst many of you have not yet disposed of your two-years-old hen. And all this possibly with but little more accommodation than during the winter months! Overcrowding is as bad for poultry as for man," writes the Rev. T. W. Sturges in the "Poultry Manual"; many diseases the present of vermin, and stunted growth being some of its effects. Repeatedly it has been pointed out that if you would be financially successful with your poultry it is a fundamental rule that you must never keep a single wastrel in your yards. Such birds swallow the profits that your good ones are making. Surely this axiom, in conjunction with the evils atten- dant on overcrowding, renders it imperative for you to at once go right throught your stock and market such as come under the category of wastrels. Your bens that have laid for two seasons, what do you expect futher from them ? Either this month or early next they will moult; for a considerable period you will have no return whatever from them-and in their third season it will oesuch a neglig- ible quantity as not to meet your corn merchant account. During the Jewish festivals about Easter- tide you would have secured top prices for fat, old hens, to-day they will not realise so much, but nevertheless get rid of them at once they are an actual source Qf losi at the moment, there is no prospect of them mat- erially improving, and you waut the room. Your early hatched chicks. If you are breeding for utility purposes you should now be killing regularly, this action tending to prevent overcrowding; but if you only go in for exhibition, surely there are many that you can cull out with advantage to the re- mainder. Vermin Those who have acted upon the advice given earlier in the season, to cresote and limewash all houses, will bb compara- tively immune from these pests those who have not done so will have all their work cut out to com bat their ravages now that the hot weather is with us. That sickly bird that nied It was not due to the heat; examine her—literally infested with lice- and tueir depredations are the cause of her pale, anaemic condition and ultimate death. Leave no stone unturned to be rid of vermin growth in young stock, condition of mature stock in other words, "profit" cannot be where vermin exist. The moulting season will soon commence, lucky iudeed the poultry-keeper whose birds get this over early. Shedding the old feathers and obtaining the new puts a great strain on the bird's constitution the addition of a tablespoonful of flowers of sulphur to the soft, food of a bout a dozen fowls, on fine I momiugs, will materially assist them. I During the heat of summer, and particu- larly at moulting time, a tonic is undoubtedly beneficial, and that known as Douglas Mixture is particularly recommended. If is easily prepared and is inexpensive. Take -4 quarter-pound of sulphate of iron crysuds and a half-ounce of sulphuric acid. Placn them in a large, glazed, earthenware jar, and pour over the contents one gallon of water. Stir with a stick several tim s during the day till all is dissolved. After skimming, the mixture should then be bottled and well corked. A tablespoonful of tbe mixture to each quart of drinking water in the correct dose. This should be given ill earthenware vessels, and not in iron or ziic founts. Male birds intended for next year's breed- ing pens should be isolated in confortab>e quarters with a convenient run. If you go for a summer holiday, make adequate arrangements for the care and com- fort of your flock. Results which are to follow your last six months' efforts can easily be ruined by a fortnight's neglect. Keep the fowls' drinking water protected from the rays of the sun, and change it frequently. Eggs are now steadily advancing in price. Keep your pullets growing, therefore, an t start feeding your hens for laying immedi- ately the moult begins. (To be continued.) [Any enquiries concerning poultry- keeping addressed to our expert, Ralph R Alien, Sawbridgeworth, Herts., will be answered through these columns free, but those requiring a postal answer direct or sending birds for post-mortem examination must remit, a half-crown postal order.]