Alot of people have been asking on how to start a small scale poultry farm business. This article will give you an insight on how to start the business and also how you can grow it successfully.
Poultry is a very lucrative business, not only is it sweet to consume, there are alot of opportunities in the poultry market. As easy as it may seem to start the business, it can also be a risky business. Poultry birds require time and energy. Also, to get the required growth rate, you must purchase and provide highly nutritious feed.
Why don’t we get right to it then.
1) Select Your Poultry Niche
You need to first decide what aspect of poultry farming you want to delve into. The world of Poultry is a very broad niche with different aspects. Below are niches in the poultry business;
- Meat production (Broilers breeding)
- Egg productions (Layers breeding)
- Chicken breeding (Hatchery)
- Poultry feed production
- Poultry equipment and manufacturing
- Egg and meat processing, packaging and marketing
- Poultry farming and consultancy
This is just to tell you how broad poultry farming is. I’m sure most of us are surprised about some of these areas, but that’s poultry farming for you. Of course, if you have the money and the technical know how of the business you can do all, but it is better to find out which aspect is more profitable in your area in terms of demand and income.
2) Capital Requirement
This is the aspect that scares most people. To start a small scale poultry behind your house may require a capital of N150,000 to start with, but you don’t have to have it all at once.
This is the first thing required when starting a poultry farm (you don’t expect to raise your birds in the sky.. lol). The size of land depends on the quantity of birds you want to raise. You needs to select a fresh environment and a pollution free area.
Renting a land for your poultry farm may noy be a bad idea but it isn’t advisable, you can always start small and then expand from there. When selecting your land, there are alot of things to keep in mind like having a great source of water, free from snakes and other predators, proximity to the market, transportation e.t.c.
Your housing system depends on your poultry breed and farming method. But here are some general tips to use while building suitable houses for your birds.
- Ventilation is very crucial. It helps to keep the birds healthy and productive.
- Your system must be suitable to allow sufficient amount of fresh air and light inside the house.
- In the case of numerous houses, there should be a distance of about 40ft between them.
- Make sure you clean the entire house and farm before you bring the chicks into the farm.
- Clean the liter regularly.
- You can use some cheap materials like wooden material or rice ban for making liter.
- Keep the feeding and watering equipment in proper distance from each other according to the number of birds and farming system. And always clean all types of equipment everyday.
- The house must have all required facilities for poultry birds.
The housing system commonly used in poultry farming are;
- Extensive System: range and fold unit
- Semi intensive system: Standard semi intensive unit and straw yard
- Intensive System: 1. Deep liter, 2. wire and slated floor, 3. battery cage 4. straw yard
Just as we require balanced diet, so do the chicks. High quality food keep the birds healthy and highly productive. It’s advisable to provide fresh amount of food according to the age and number of the poultry birds. Never forget to always supply sufficient amount of fresh water according to the daily demands of the birds.
Poultry feeds includes
Wheat: Wheat is one of the best grains to be used as poultry feed ingredients. You should include a certain amount of wheat in the poultry feed ratio.
Barley: Generally barley is not as delicious like wheat and oats. But it contains fiber and a great source of fat.
Corn: Corn can be very effective grain for your poultry birds. You can feed whole, cracked or grinded. You can feed ripe corns to your hens.
Millet: It has good advantages as poultry feed. You can use millet in growing, laying and fattening ratio. Millet is easily digestible and help to increase body temperature.
Flax: It is suitable for high amount of protein in your poultry feed. You can use small amount of flax in the feed mixture.
Skim Milk and Butter Milk: They are very useful for all kinds of poultry birds. Especially for the young chicks and laying hens. Skim and butter milk play a vital role to get high quality eggs for hatching. And it’s also reliable source of protein.
By Products Of Grain: By products of grains have a great health value and suitable for feeding the poultry birds. Buy various types of by products if grains are available in the shop where poultry feed are prepared or sold. It’s price is comparably higher than any other poultry feed ingredients.
Fish Oil: Fish oil is a dependable source of vitamin A and D.
Poultry farming is very delicate and sensitive. Your birds can be infected by diseases easily ranging from viral, fungal, bacterial, nutritional amd parasitic diseases. Proper vaccination is required to keep your birds disease free, healthy and productive. And if somehow, disease occurs in the farm, meet a vet doctor as soon as possible and listen to his advice.
There you have it. This is the basic knowledge you need to start your own poultry farm. Always feel free to drop a comment and ask any question. Good luck as you start your poultry farm.