Egg Collection Systems
Egg collection systems play an important role in successful layer and breeder management, both with floor and cage production. This is mainly due to the following reasons:
- reduced time and labour costs;
- optimum egg quality, i.e. cleaner eggs, few cracked eggs;
- accurate count of the total number of eggs produced per tier, row or house.
Big Dutchman egg collection systems meet even the highest requirements:
- gentle transport of the eggs;
- high functional reliability;
- easy handling.
The ST (standard) elevator transfers eggs onto the elevator chain in a set pattern. This is to ensure that no eggs are transferred onto already occupied steps. If a barn houses birds of different age groups, ST elevators can also be used to collect eggs per row or per flock. In order to match the conveying capacity and the laying performance, we recommend separately actuating egg belts and elevator chains.
With the ST elevator, dosing wheels transport the eggs onto the elevator chain, from where they are moved downwards to the lower sliding grille. The chain turns here and then transports the eggs upwards to the desired height, where they are transferred onto the cross belt. The transfer can be carried out at any height; the standard height, however, is 2.10 m (Q 210) to guarantee a clearance height of 1.95 m. If a manual collection table is installed, the transfer height lies at 80 cm (Q 80).
- large collection capacity of up to 16,500 eggs per hour and per elevator*;
- easy access to all cage rows; the cross collection is not an obstruction;
- less space required in the end set area;
- suitable for all cage types.
* depending on the system type, the egg belt width and the speed of the longitudinal belt
The EggCellent elevator designed by Big Dutchman is characterised by its large collection capacity and requires only minimum system adjustments. Of course it also provides everything necessary for a safe egg transport. From the longitudinal belt, the eggs are conveyed onto a rod conveyor, from where they are then transferred onto the elevator chain. This process does not require any additional dosing units: a deflector helps to distribute the eggs over the entire width of the elevator chain.
In order to match the conveying capacity and the laying performance, we recommend separately actuating egg belts and elevator chains.
- large collection capacity of up to 19,000 eggs per hour and per elevator*;
- simultaneous collection from up to eight tiers;
- no dosing units necessary, i.e. maintenance requirements are at a minimum;
- rod conveyors have a cleaning function so that eggs without shell and dirt do not reach the elevator chain;
- easy access to all cage rows, no obstruction because of the cross collection;
- suitable for all cage types;
- simple assembly and adjustment.
* depending on the system type, the egg belt width and the speed of the longitudinal belt
The lift system collects the eggs per tier and simultaneously from all rows. The main feature of the lift system is that the cross conveyor moves to the individual tiers to collect the eggs. Once it has collected the eggs from all tiers, the lift moves into its parking position. The lift system is a good and economic solution especially for small units or individual houses, and when the eggs are not collected per flock. The eggs are transported very gently as only one transfer is involved between the longitudinal belt and the cross belt.
To allow the operator to match the conveying capacity with the performance of the egg grader, a frequency regulator should be installed. This ensures that the longitudinal belt speed of 4 m/min can be controlled between 25 and 60 Hz.
- smooth egg transport as there is only one transfer from the longitudinal belt to the cross belt;
- easy access to all rows because the lift system moves into a parking position after egg collection is completed, i.e. the cross collection is no obstruction;
- little space required in the end set area;
- the lift system can be combined with any cross collection of any width.
Different farm layouts as well as differences in height often require individual solutions for egg transport. Curve conveyors are commonly used as cross collection because, thanks to their flexibility, they can be adapted to any type of layout.
The core part of each curve conveyor is a galvanized or plastic-coated chain that consists of two hardened outer chains with weld-on cross bars. The cross bars of the standard conveyor chain are all on the same level so that the eggs are transferred to the chain smoothly and do not accumulate along the inner radius of the curve.
The distance between the cross bars allows for an ascending gradient of up to 20°. Standard bends of 180°, 90° and 45° are available to create curves. The conveying capacity is determined by the conveying speed and the effective width of the curve conveyor. When using elevator and lift systems, deflectors reduce this effective width by 100-120 mm in the transfer area.
The EggTrax egg belt drive transfers the eggs gently from the longitudinal egg belt (nest) to any connected egg collection system. The reinforced drive unit operates at a speed of 2.6 m/min and is available for different egg belt widths: 245, 350, 400 and 500 mm.
- the unit can be removed single-handedly, thus facilitating cleaning with a high-pressure cleaner;
- anti-crack fingers provide a light pressure on the eggs, which ensures a controlled transfer to the cross belt;
- tension-adjustable wire threads guarantee a smooth transfer of the eggs while simultaneously allowing feathers, dust and eggs without shell to fall down between the threads.
Vertical conveyors are the standard solution whenever there is little space between the nests and the cross collection. They operate at a gradient of 50° and are available in two widths: 350 and 500 mm.
Vertical conveyors are powered by a separate drive unit for a more flexible collection speed. We recommend frequency-regulating the longitudinal egg belt (optional).
Rod conveyors are often used in alternative egg production to connect the nest with the cross collection. They can only be used in straight direction.
The rods are made of small, stabilised plastic tubes that are connected by a roller chain on both ends. The distance between the rods is small enough that even smaller eggs cannot fall through, despite possible gradients of up to 25°.
We recommend using the lift system for multi-level nests. Eggs are collected simultaneously per level in all rows.
The lift system is an egg collection unit specially designed for gentle egg transport as there is only one transfer point. The production system is fully accessible because once all eggs have been collected, the lift moves into its parking position which can be at a height of more than 2 m.
Another advantage is that the lift requires only little space in the end set area. Lifts can automatically collect eggs mislaid in the system, so-called “system eggs”. For increased hygiene, the lift should be installed in the service room.
EC elevator with and without system egg collection
The EC elevator is able to collect large numbers of eggs.
Especially in multi-level houses (up to three levels), the elevator may be equipped with an extra wide elevator chain and is thus an efficient egg collection system: it does not require much space and collects up to 15,000 eggs per hour.
A new feature is the option for “system egg collection”: the elevator can simultaneously collect eggs mislaid in the system. All belts either run into the elevator in parallel or system eggs are collected separately.
EggSort ensures maximum smoothness during egg collection because there are virtually no transfer points. The longitudinal egg belt runs over the table which means that no additional drive units are needed.
- ideally suited for the manual collection of eggs;
- standard drive speed: 2.6 m/min, optionally VarioSpeed;
- available for different egg belt widths (2 x 200, 245, 400 and 500 mm);
- an integrated egg belt brush keeps the egg belts clean;
- robust and completely galvanized design for a long service life.
Ultrasound cleaning unit for curve conveyors
Big Dutchman offers two cleaning units, both available as stationary and mobile version, to clean the entire curve conveyor’s chain reliably from dirt and thus from bacteria, salmonellae or fungi.
Both units use the ultrasound technology, in combination with hot water and a special cleaning agent. The compact cleaning unit can clean up to 200 m of chain before the basin has to be refilled, while the larger unit cleans chain sections of up to 600 m. Depending on the degree of contamination, multiple repetitions may become necessary.
The Big Dutchman egg counting system records every single egg. This is possible thanks to an innovative camera technology with image processing integrated in the sensor. EggCam “sees” one entire part of the conveying path with high resolution and is thus able to recognise every single egg.
EggCam can be installed either at the longitudinal egg belt in every tier or at the cross belt. The camera works on up to 14 cm wide fabric or rod belts in cage systems and on up to 35 cm wide rod conveyors in floor production.
- accurate recording of all eggs;
- EggCam also works reliably in the dark due to infrared light;
- the operator can easily retrieve and analyse the data of all installed EggCams in real time when using the amacs management system.
When using Digital EggFlow, the egg belt speed can be controlled based on the total number of eggs coming from the different houses. This makes it possible to optimally utilise the connected graders and packers.
- graders and packers are continuously loaded at full capacity;
- ideal egg quality thanks to a smooth and gentle transport of the eggs (option);
- automatic start of the belts in the morning; the egg flow stops directly at the packer;
- collection groups can be planned one day in advance;
- egg collection is completed simultaneously in all houses that belong to the same collection group – at maximum filling rates;
- Digital EggFlow allows synchronising up to five cross belts for up to four packers/graders.