Poultry farming in Nigeria has not only proven to be one of the most important aspect of farming but also a very profitable business opportunity for entrepreneurs and provides employment for the job seekers. Apart from Pork and fish, Chicken is one of the major sources of animal meat and is one of the most popularly eaten meat. The major customers for poultry farms are hotels, fast food restaurants, beer parlours etc. So because of this high market demand, Poultry farming offers an opportunity to make big bucks for big investors as well as small scale farmers.
Here are the basic requirements you need to set up your farm. Research Your Product-As the “first things first!” saying goes, you will need to carry out a proper research on poultry farming. You need to know the pros and the cons in the business, have all grounds covered before getting started.
Research on the following: Various breeds of birds, What to look for while selecting day old chicks, What each breed eats, Their life span, How often they lay eggs if they are layers , How to care for them, Housing requirements , Chicken illnesses, symptoms, causes and cures, And other challenges
Land: If you are looking to fully get into poultry farming in Nigeria, I recommend that you acquire a plot or two of land( although for small scale you can start with any large empty space behind your house). Buying a land to situate your poultry firm can be said to be the most expenses you will make in the poultry business but you should see it as an asset which it definitely is. Because if by any chance the business fails, you can sell off the land and recover some of your capital. Here are some tips to land acquisition for your farm.
You should acquire land in rural or remote areas. This is because land in such less developed areas is cheap. You can get 3 or 4 plots of land in the rural area for the price of 1 plot of land in the city. However, you will not have to bother with animal/human cohabit polices. Make sure that the land you acquire is accessible so that your birds can be transported to the urban area for sell. Housing/Coop Housing for your birds is another important factor to consider before you can start your own poultry farming in Nigeria. Here are a few basic tips; You should construct a well ventilated coop (hen house) for your chickens; well aired but not too warm. Your coop should be able to keep off rodents, snakes, cats and other predators.
Ensure there is enough space for the birds to move around. The space helps curtail an outbreak of epidemic. Make sure that your coop is easily accessible, as you will need to make regular visits to feed, refill water and clean the coop. Include a roosting area in your coop (if you have layers) Employ a means for handling or disposing chicken manure/ waste. Visit any reputable poultry farm to see how the house is constructed. Chicken feed Your birds will need a properly prepared chicken feed that is the right type for their breed, age, for growth and sustenance. To make sure that your birds grow fast and stay healthy, buy quality chicken feed products. You can buy such chicken feeds in any animal product store close to you. As there are different types of feeds in the market, make sure you are buying the right kind of feed that suits your birds at every point in time (e.g. chick starter, Broiler starter, Layer feeds etc. There are locally made feeds. I would advise that if you will have to use these locally formulated feeds, be sure of what you are doing. When it comes to feeding your chickens, here are a few basic tips;
Birds eat small amounts of feed frequently, so fill the chicken’s feeders so that food will be available always. Or you can feed them at certain times of the day (morning and evening). Chickens do not eat in the dark so you must have the lights on for the birds to eat in the night. Make sure feed is stored in a dry cool environment Do not feed your birds’ moldy food. It will harm them. Make sure there is always clean drinking water. Check on the feeders and water troughs often; so you can remove chicken droppings from them. Medication-To guarantee constant production of chicken and eggs, your birds must be regularly checked by a veterinary doctor to ensure their good health. Your chickens should be vaccinated to prevent all bird related diseases like bird flu, fowl cholera, fowl pox etc. I advise you have a personal vet doctor for your chickens.