Poultry Science Terms - F

Face: skin around and below the eyes. 

Factory Farm: large scale industrial site where animals (generally chickens, turkeys, cattle, or pigs) are confined for meat or egg production

Faking: dishonest practice of concealing a defect or disqualification from a potential buyer or a show judge 

Family Farm: farm where ownership and management are controlled by at least one family member who lives on the farm, not by a corporation or absentee owner. Day-to-day labor and management are provided by the farm family that owns or leases the production or production equipment

Fart egg: very small egg containing no yolk, also called a wind egg or rooster egg

Fat: organic combination of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen in such relative quantities that the caloric value of the compound is high

Fat soluble vitamin: essential, fat-based vitamins absorbed and stored in the body that occur in nature in association with lipids

Feather legged: description of those breeds of chickens with feathers growing down their shanks 

Feather picking: detrimental activity of chickens picking or pulling at each other's feathers that is often started from stress, aggression, or nutritional problems within a flock

Fecal: pertaining to the feces 

Feces: droppings, manure, or bodily waste from an animal

Federal Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS): public health regulatory agency for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that works to ensure that the United States' commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products is safe, wholesome, appropriately labeled and packaged safely

Feed conversion ratio: relationship between amount of feed needed to produce 1 pound of meat gain or dozen eggs produced

Feed efficiency: measurement of feed intake per pound of weight gained

Feed hopper: semi-automatic feeding system which has the capacity to hold food in addition to that in the feeding trough associated with the feeder

Feeder: container for the poultry feed. Feeders can keep the feed clean and fresh. Use a feeder instead of allowing the chickens to scratch for their feed

Feral: wild, untamed 

Fertile: egg that is fertilized and thus capable of having a chick develop (under the right environmental conditions) 

Fertile egg: eggs in which fertilization of the blastodisc has occurred to create the blastoderm. Resulted from the joining of the female ovum and the male sperm to create the embryo

Fertility: percentage of eggs that are fertile; quality or state of being fertile 

Fertilization: act or process of making or becoming fertile; the union of a male cell with a female cell

Finish: amount of fat under the skin of a meat bird  

Flaccid: limp

Fledge: care for young birds while still in the nest

Fleet: group of swans in captivity

Flight feathers: large primary and secondary feathers of the wings 

Flighty: excitable flock inclined to fly at the slightest provocation

Flock: number of birds of the same origin (genotype), age and managed in the same way; group of birds living together

Floor eggs: eggs laid on the floor of the shed and not in designated nest sites/ boxes

Fluff: feathers that are soft and downy as opposed to a hard feather such as a wing. The lower thighs and abdomens of chickens have fluff feathers; downy feathers around the vent of fowl

Fluke: trematode flatworm parasite

Foie gras: french for 'fatty liver' and is a food product made from the liver of a duck or goose that has been specifically fattened for this purpose 

Follicle: thin highly vascular ovarian tissue containing the growing ovum

Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH): hormone produced by the pituitary gland that promotes growth of ovarian follicles in the female and sperm in the male

Fomite: inanimate objects such as shipping crates, feed sacks, clothing, shoes, and tires that may harbor disease-causing organisms and may be either a vehicle or a reservoir of infection helping to transmit the disease 

Foot candle: measurement of light intensity; density of light striking each and every point on a segment of the inside surface of an imaginary one foot radius sphere with a one candlepower source at the center

Forage: search for naturally occurring nourishment by scratching the ground; also refers to the crops in a pasture 

Forced air incubator: mechanical device for hatching fertile eggs containing a fan to circulate warm air 

Forced air ventilation: using fans to mechanically force air in to then and out of the house

Forced molt: part of a hen's natural reproductive cycle. After laying eggs for about a year, a hen loses her feathers and rests for a few weeks as new feathers grow in. This is called molting, or a molt, and it usually happens at the beginning of winter. On large production farms, hens are subjected to forced molting so that they molt simultaneously and over a very short time period

Fount: water fountain or watering device for animals

Fowl: describes all members of Gallus domesticus (domestic fowl) irrespective of age, sex or breed; also refers to a hen at the end of its productive life (a stewing hen) 

Fowl Pox: highly contagious disease of poultry spread by mosquitos

Free-range: method of poultry farming that allows the flock (usually poultry, and the eggs that they produce) to roam free outdoors and engage in natural behaviors, for at least part of the day, instead of living in confinement housing 

Free range housing: system of housing where the birds have a shelter house and access to an outside area during the hours of daylight

Fresh product: poultry products that are never stored below 26 degrees F

Frizzle: feather that curls rather than laying flat; term for a chicken with such feathers

Frozen product: poultry products that at some point are stored below 0 degrees Fahrenheit 

Fryer: young meat-type chicken bred for meat production

Fungi: group of plants without chlorophyll that reproduce by spores, includes molds which can cause animal health problems; singular - fungus

Further processed product: food item produced by forming meat and adding a covering



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