Turkeys are one of the easiest animals to manage, rear and control. Turkeys are even often used to compare humans that are sheepish, indecisive or not strong enough. That aside, Turkey farming in Nigeria is a very lucrative business. It is in fact one way that you can make a whole lot of money from poultry keeping. Like a few other agricultural products, Nigeria imports a large chunk of the generally consumed frozen turkey from the capital of Benin Republic – Cotonou; until the federal government placed a ban on the act. The ban does not only ensure a better safety measure, it blows open the market for Turkey farming in Nigeria.
There are a few guidelines to rearing turkeys and this post would in a way guide you through the basics. If you intend on starting a turkey farm any time soon, you just might have stumbled across the necessary push and vital piece of information needed to kick-start your business. The first and foremost thing you need to have at the back of your mind is that in this same Nigeria, there are millionaire turkey farmers. Now, let’s check out how to start and run a profitable turkey farming business in Nigeria.
Turkey Farming: Overview
Of all fowls, Turkeys are the fastest growing and one of the most demanded ones in the market. There a lot of people who will choose turkey meat over any other kind of meat any time any day, especially people who no longer have the strength to grind and tear goat meat, cow meat, bush meat and so on. Turkey meat is a sumptuous option for many people who do not really want to leave the meat eating category.
Asides from the meat, turkeys are also one of the most feathered birds and their feathers, fertilized eggs; even their droppings are all marketable. Frozen turkey tops the frozen foods list, and it’s readily available for purchase in frozen food stores all over the country but the availability is always undermined by the demand for it. Even though turkeys are easy to rear, they need watchful eyes as they are most times, not as strong as they look.
Turkey rearing can be a little bit technical, as it starts from day old. The day olds are normally kept in a brooder house under normal room temperature for about 5 weeks; during which they grow and mature enough to be separated. Then the birds are separated into different houses. The females grow a little bit slower than the males and are kept in one house, while the males that are fast growers are kept in another house. They may be there till their full maturity stage, which is usually 20 weeks, after which they may either be sold for money or allowed to mate and prepare them for the production of eggs
Turkey Farming: Required Facilities
Poultry Farm: The area where the turkeys are going to be raised must be thoughtfully and professionally constructed. The fowls might be reared in a well-protected house that’s neither too cold nor too hot. The floor of the area should be covered with a material that doesn’t absorb or reflect temperature. Like sags, paper packs, and so on.
If they’re going to be in wire mesh poultries, the poultry should be well ventilated and protected especially from the intruders and there should be space for their feeds which could also hold their drinking water.
Poultry Feeds: Feeding is the most important aspect of Turkey farming. Carbohydrates and fats can increase the energy of fowl and they can get the correct amount of nutrients from a balanced ration of feeds. When the fowls are fed fat feeds, they can proportionally increase in size although their strength depends on the carbohydrate feed they consume. The larger the turkey is, the more the energy it will take to maintain the body and also to produce eggs.
Turkeys eat a lot and it is preferable you raise the tom turkey as they are more likely to give you quick return for your money. They are very strong, disease-resistant, and in a space of 2 eight weeks, could grow larger than other specie variety. Also they fairly reflect whatever you feed them. A tom of up to eighteen pounds could require just forty two pounds of feed.
Also, water should be readily available as turkeys can be the highest water drinkers on the poultry farm.
Knowledge: If you need first-hand practical turkey farming experience, you could attach to a nearby poultry farm. You could also read relevant materials like this one, make in-depth research and start-up your business. The former option is better if you have access to a poultry farm.
Turkey Farming: Feasibility Study
Turkey farming isn’t the most expensive business to start-up. One can start a Turkey farm with just 5 turkeys (3 females and 2 males) N15,000 X 5 = N75,000. Poultry construction, feeds purchase, poultry periodic treatment, water supply, all approximated to N150,000
At the end of one farming year, you should have nothing less than 50 turkeys in your poultry farm, which if sold for N15,000 each when mature, equals a potential N750,000.
Turkey Farming: Risks Involved
- If the poultry is not well protected, your biggest threat would be snakes that’ll keep eating the eggs or killing the fowls.
- Soldier ants, bush rats, and other rodents can also be a threat to your turkey farming business.
- Unhygienic poultry could lead to infections and the delicate part is that diseases spread faster amidst turkeys than most other poultry animals.
- Improper feeding would make your turkeys less preferred to others from other farms, so you must be ready to spend on feeding.
Turkey Farming: Potential Benefits
- Starting a turkey farming business in Nigeria isn’t overly capital intensive as other animal husbandry businesses.
- The more the local production of turkey, the less the need to import. (As some still import frozen turkey into the country illegally).
- Turkeys are not the most difficult animals to rear; in fact, with the right facilities, they can be the easiest to manage.
- If instructions are followed properly, and adequate facilities provided, turkeys are the kind of animals that can give you maximum ROI.
- Turkeys don’t need much market persuasion and cajoling, as you can sell of as many as 30 mature turkeys in one day if you get your targets right.
- The ROI on turkey farming in Nigeria is really worth the time, effort and every other form of investments put in it.