Developing veterinary and extension professionals’ capacity to support small-scale poultry farming in Missouri

Project Overview

Project Type: Professional Development Program
Funds awarded in 2023: $119,888.00
Projected End Date: 09/30/2026
Grant Recipient: Lincoln University of Missouri
Region: North Central
State: Missouri
Project Coordinator:
Dr. Tatijana Fisher
Lincoln University of Missouri


  • Animals: poultry


  • Animal Production: animal protection and health
  • Education and Training: extension, workshop

    Proposal abstract:

    This project aims to improve the capacity of veterinary and extension professionals to serve small poultry producers and increase the sustainability of small-scale poultry production by improving poultry health and productivity through increased access to veterinary care and educational opportunities. Target participants include extension educators, veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and veterinary students that can provide education and support to small poultry producers. During this three-year program, twelve webinars and ten workshops will be conducted to provide participants with technical information and hands-on experience with poultry. Webinar topics will include poultry husbandry, poultry nutrition, common diseases in small-flock poultry, diagnostic techniques, and treatment considerations. Workshops will provide opportunities for participants to gain hands-on experience handling poultry. Participants will gain insights, skills, technical information, and professional relationships that will prepare and motivate them to better serve small poultry producers. Short-term desired outcomes include increased interest in, knowledge about, and comfort with poultry among veterinary and extension professionals. Intermediate desired outcomes include implementation of veterinary services and extension programs by participants to benefit small poultry producers. Long-term desired outcomes include enhanced sustainability of small-scale agriculture through improved access to veterinary and extension resources for poultry on small farms. End-of-session and follow-up evaluations will provide information about changes in knowledge, attitudes, and behavior of participants, as well as about further interests and needs. Overall, the outcomes of this program will directly support small poultry producers by developing a network of trained experts that can help prevent and address health and production issues in their flocks.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    Outputs of this project will include participation in educational activities and creation of educational materials related to small-flock poultry health.

    1. A series of 12 online webinars will be conducted to reach a wide audience of veterinary and extension professionals. Key topics will include small-flock poultry management, common poultry diseases in Missouri, veterinary diagnostic services for poultry, small farm biosecurity, and other topics relevant to producing poultry on small farms. These webinar presentations will be recorded and made available on Lincoln University’s website to serve as reference material for veterinary and extension professionals.
    2. A total of 10 regional in-person workshops across Missouri will provide hands-on poultry training, research-based best practices, and networking opportunities to veterinary and extension professionals. The target audience will be 20 veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and extension educators for each course (200 total). The workshops will cover basic information about poultry health and management on small farms, with an emphasis on hands-on training in animal handling.
    3. The project is expected to produce a network of 200 veterinary and extension professionals who are more comfortable handling poultry, have a better understanding of poultry health on small farms, and are better able to serve the needs of small poultry producers.
    4. At least 20 veterinarians and extension professionals will offer veterinary services or conduct extension programs for small poultry producers
    5. The project will produce at least four guide sheets related to poultry health on small farms. Guide sheet topics may include small-farm biosecurity, external parasite control in poultry, internal parasite control in poultry, common poultry diseases in Missouri, and other topics relevant to small producers.
    6. This project will develop stronger relationships between Lincoln University, the University of Missouri, veterinarians, and extension educators in Missouri. These relationships and partnerships are critical to building a strong foundation and to leverage more support and funds for small-scale sustainable poultry production.
    7. This project will produce a list of veterinarians and veterinary clinics in Missouri that will help small poultry producers with their poultry.
    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.