Blog | The 14th Biennial Pheasant Management Seminar

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The 14th Biennial Pheasant Management Seminar-March 3-6, 2024

On March 22, 2024 in seminar by Bill MacFarlane


The Biennial Pheasant Management Seminar is always exciting for us, as we get to meet old and new colleagues and hear some of the best speakers in the business. This year we had 123 guests, 17 from as far away as France, Romania, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Our United States guests came from all over the country, including Wisconsin, Texas, Hawaii, California, New York, Colorado, Utah, North Carolina, Alabama, Minnesota, and Arkansas. The accommodations, the seminar, and the group meals in the surrounding area provided many opportunities for guests to meet and network with colleagues in the pheasant business. The chance to share personal experiences and discuss seminar topics was an integral part of our seminar planning, and there were many relevant topics. We are grateful to our speakers and guests for making this seminar such an exciting and satisfying experience for MacFarlane Pheasants.

Day 1 Highlights

Day one of our seminar included Ronnie Viljoen, who shared his experience working with Jamesway and planning our expanded and remodeled hatchery. Ronnie highlighted the Platinum 3, P60 Incubators that are now installed in the new hatchery. He was followed by Dr. Keith Bramwell, who provided Part 2 (Designing a New Hatchery). Dr. Bramwell delivered insights into Jamesways single-stage technology, highlighting its significant benefits for embryo performance. Jamesway Sales Manager David Hammond was also in attendance.

Before leaving for a MacFarlane Farm tour and visiting the new hatchery, Dr. Robert Fischer discussed Air, Feed and Water Technologies to Enhance the Livability of Gamebirds. Gamebird enthusiasts rely on science and experience to make decisions about the air, feed, and water that will increase the livability of the birds they raise, so we were all pleased to hear the latest information on the topic.

After lunch, our attendees got a bus tour of the MacFarlane farm, and a chance to see the new hatchery at MacFarlane Pheasants. The MacFarlane Farm tour was fun for all. We upheld our biosecurity standards, and guests were excited to see our hatchery expansion and new incubators. Tornado sirens going off during the tour added to the excitement!

 Day 2 Highlights

The morning of the second day was filled with important topics. Oliver de Chevigne from L’envol de Retz discussed the Avian Flu in France. This topic interests everyone, because this flu is so destructive to pheasant farms worldwide.

Shane Smith discussed How to Successfully Breed Pheasants Indoors, and Bill MacFarlane shared his knowledge of Controlling Input Costs. Chris Theisen discussed Contingency Plans on Your Farm.

The afternoon presentations included speaker Jeff May from Clear View Enterprises who shared his thoughts on Brooding, and the Transition to Flight Pens.

Dr. Fred Dustin Clark talked about Pheasant Diseases and Prevention. He came to us from the University of Arkansas, where he is the Associate Poultry Center Director. He has the following degrees: Ph.D., Veterinary Pathobiology, M.S., Veterinary Microbiology, and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Texas A&M University. He is also a published author. His topic contributed to many good discussions during networking times.

Tony Smith. from MTM Pheasants, shared his interesting pheasant experience with guests through a PowerPoint  MTM Pheasants Farm Tour. He started raising a few hundred pheasants in 1995, as a hobby, while in college. His hobby turned into an incorporated business in 2015, which is featured in the PowerPoint presentation.


Day 3 Highlights

Our guests had a hands-on experience sexing chicks to start the day and a Necropsy lab.

Then, we had a presentation by Chris Wileman and  Grant Barnes from the Department of Transportation. They reviewed Complying With Federal DOT Regulations. DOT compliance regulations aim to enforce safety measures to reduce driving incidents. They also covered how to follow inspection requirements.

Dr. Lauren Nolan from Ridley Feed Ingredients talked to our guest about Gut Health and Its Impact on Nutrition.  Ridley Feed Ingredients provides nutritional support for feed ingredients in the poultry industry.

Dr. Robert Porter, a distinguished veterinarian from the University of Minnesota, concluded the seminar by discussing What to do if Your Birds Get Sick. His presentation left our participants with even more problem-solving information and was a perfect conclusion.

MacFarlane Pheasants would like to thank our speakers and guests for making this a highlight of our year. Special thanks to Michael Martz, Gap View Hunting Preserve, for sending us an email when he got home.

"Just wanted to send you all a thank you for putting on the conference.  I was looking forward to it and left excited about the future.  That may have been the best conference I ever participated in. Speakers and topics were great. You all do a great job and you do our industry a great service. It does not go unnoticed and is not taken for granted. Thank you again." 

Michael Martz, Martz’s Gap View Hunting Preserve

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