Trimming the beak means:
- Removal of no more than 1/3 of the beak, measured from the tip to the nostrils openings performed with only one manipulation; or
- Not more than 1/3 of the upper part of the beak measured in the same way; and stopping subsequent bleeding by cauterization.
Trimming the beaks of meat-bred birds is not necessary, as they are slaughtered before reaching sexual maturity. Trimming the beaks of breeding birds should be avoided where possible, or used only on the advice of a veterinarian to prevent more serious problems related to the welfare of birds, such as injuries due to biting or cannibalism.
Attention must be paid to the conditions under which the birds are kept which can lead to manifestations of aggression to reduce the need for trimming the beaks. It is possible to place bales of straw or grain. It is not necessary to trim the beak of female chickens for breeding, a in males only the tip can be removed. It is best to do this at 5-10 days of age so that the chicks can build a feeding habit and pecking before this manipulation is performed. This manipulation at adult birds should be done only on the recommendation of a veterinarian.