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Key Steps in starting a poultry farm



Key Steps in starting a poultry farm

Our dear new poultry farmer, are you planning to start your own poultry farm? If so, then you should enter the business well prepared by considering all of its aspects. Okay, so let’s get into this; right from setting up some basic equipment to raising the birds and marketing your business, you have to take every step wisely. #1– Pick your type of Bird to Rear Just before you start this new farming business venture, it is important to have a clear picture of what type of breed to farm. In our country, Nigeria, aside from locally grown chickens, there are two major breeds that are common among poultry farmers. Broilers: Mostly raised for meat and grow a hatch weight of 40g to a weight of approximately 1.5 to 2 kg within 6 weeks only. Layers: Mostly used for commercial egg production and then resold for meat consumption. Layer chickens are raised from one day old and start laying eggs from ages of 18-19 weeks and carry on until 72-78 weeks of age. Cockerels: Just like the broilers, cockerels are also for meat production and have a special market demand but then, its growth is very slow, unlike broilers which grow very fast. Try to consider these before venturing into it, the good thing is Cockerels can survive in many environments, unlike broilers. #2 – Pick a Suitable Farm Site The next step is very important, this has to do with where your poultry farm is situated. It is very important for you to have a dedicated farm site. The size of your farm site should be determined by the number of birds you intend to rear. If you have enough land at your backyard and can’t afford to acquire a new site, you can go ahead, remember it’s always better to start small. #3 – Make available good housing for the Birds When it comes to poultry farming, housing is the next important factor after getting a farm site. Proper poultry housing is necessary for the protection and survival of your commercial poultry birds. The housing system you select totally depends on the poultry breeds and farming method. Housing design varies in accordance with various types of poultry raising methods. Ensure it is spacious enough to permit free movement and running of the birds. Shelters must be raised adequately to prevent the risk of flooding and must be adequately ventilated and protected from sunlight. #4 – Feeding and Medication of the Birds For commercial poultry production, good quality, highly nutritious feed is mandatory in order to keep your bird healthy and very productive. Keep your feed in a clean and dry place always; as contaminated feed can infect poultry. Also, your birds need not lack water. Lack of adequate water supply will impede their growth. Your birds are prone to diseases, however, proper medication and vaccination can prevent many poultry diseases affecting your birds. As a commercial poultry farmer, you need to have a veterinary doctor that can come run a check on your birds when the need arises. There are various routine medications and vaccinations that help towards the healthiness of your birds to keep them safe from viruses and bacterial infections. You can also get adequate knowledge and advice on the medication of your birds from advisory service-based businesses or veterinary doctors. #5 – Marketing of your Birds Your poultry farming is a very profitable business and the desire of every farmer is to make good sales after every harvest. So you need to pay attention to the marketing and sales aspect of your business. Do not be caught up in the operational aspect of your business so much that you ignore the sales aspect. You can take the step to put up your birds or eggs on the agricmarket.com website to showcase your products online, you can also sell directly to hotels, restaurants, etc. Cost of Starting up You can begin with as little as N65,000 (basically covers the cost of buying the day-old chicks and feeding them) and get a 100% return on your capital investment within six months. Your chicks should take only 21 days to hatch, with this, you can start generating an income just three weeks after starting.

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