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Agribusiness

Step By Step Guide On How To Rear Broilers And Kienyeji Chicken

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In the modern day Kenyan, most young people are involved in technology related careers such that it would not be a wonder to see that in the five or ten years to come, we might have less people producing agricultural products for the country’s population.

It is for this reason that despite my background in a technology related Bachelor’s course, I developed interest in chicken rearing especially the ‘kienyeji’ chicken.

Most important requirement is the passion and the motivation. Poultry farming is not for the faint hearted. It has several requirements and requires devotion.

To start a poultry farming business, these are the must haves;

  1. Formulate a business plan with the intended goals and how to achieve them
  2. Have enough capital. This includes some space of land, electricity/lighting and equipment –feeders, drinkers, water storage
  3. Decide which type of poultry you wish to invest in say the broilers, layers or kienyeji chicken.
  4. Find a niche market
  5. Keep all accounting records accurately

Having achieved that, let us take a step by step guide on how to rear broilers and kienyeji chicken.

First and foremost have a good housing structure facing away from the winds direction. The house should always be dry to avoid infection (wood shavings are used to keep the house dry. It should have good lighting and proper ventilation. Before the chicken arrive, disinfect the house to avoid infection. Prepare brooding area (it should be well spaced, should be without corners and with proper lighting), spread newspapers on the floor of the brooding area and light up the heat jiko 30 minutes prior chicks arrival.

Feeding

Day 1 to day 11. Chicks are in the brooder are fed on starters mash and crumb. (They eat all the time; their rooms should be properly light). At night the heat jiko is lit to keep them warm.

After 11 days, the chicken are brought out of brooder and are still fed on starters mash and crumbs up to day 21. From day 21 to day 42 the chicken are fed on finisher’s marsh and pellets and are ready for sale.

An average broiler weighs 1.5kgs. Broilers should be kept where there is no noise to avoid stressing them. Broilers takes 6 six weeks to mature.

Kienyeji chicks assuming you have the right housing and equipment.

It is necessary to select the right breed. These include improved kari chicks, kuroiler chicks, rainbow rooster and kenbro. Kienyeji farming is cheap though it requires lots of patience. Kienyeji chick takes 5-6 months to lay eggs or have right weight for meat.

Feeding

Kienyeji chicks are fed on chick mash from day one for 8weeks. By the end of 8weeks a chick should have consumed 2kgs of feed that is 35g per day.

From 8th week to 18th week they are fed on growers mash. A chick should consume around 7kgs (100g per day).

From 18th week you can introduce layers mash if you want them for eggs or kienyeji mash.

Kienyeji chicks do not depend entirely on commercial feeds unlike broilers you can feed them with food leftovers greens spinach and worms this lowers cost on feeds.

Water: Clean water should be provided always

Vaccination

  • Day 10-Gumboro first dose
  • Day 15- Gumboro second dose
  • 3rd week- Newcastle
  • 6th week – fowl pox
  • 8th week- Newcastle 2nd dose and fowl typhoid
  • 18th week -Newcastle
  • 19th week –Deworm

Prevention is better than cure always vaccinate

Housing: Should be well ventilated and spaced. Have good lighting

There are various housing methods. eg free range, battery cage system.

It is that easy to raise a chick. Though it requires passion, patience and persistence it is indeed a worthy course. Do not just be a chicken lover be a chicken raiser increase chicks weight.

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Agribusiness

The Solution To Battling Army Worms In Kenya

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The ministry of Agriculture requires an additional Sh320 million emergency funding to try and stop the crop-eating caterpillars known as fall army worms that are a threat to maize farming as they may affect food security. The assistant director of Agriculture has said.

“We have requested the Treasury to allocate us an additional Sh320 million because the fall army worm invasion is bigger than initially thought,” said Clement Muyesu. These funds will help farmers access identified pesticides which are considered costly and also use insecticides effectively.

About The Worm

One theory explaining about its origins states that the eggs or the caterpillars themselves hitched a ride in some imported produce, or even made it on board commercial flights. The armyworm whose binomial name is Spodoptera exempta also called okalombo, kommandowurm, or nutgrass armyworm, is a moth.

This worm is a very dangerous pest, capable of destroying entire crops in a matter of weeks. The larvae feed on all types of grasses, early stages of cereal crops like, corn, rice, wheat, millet, sorghum, sugar cane, and occasionally on coconut.

The army worm gets its name from its habit of “marching” in large numbers from grasslands into crops. They tend to occur in very large numbers during the rainy season, especially after periods of prolonged drought. The worms breed fast and can migrate 100 kilometers a day.

Kenya is suffering from a drought that has left about 2.7 million people in need of food aid and driven up the inflation rate.

“The rainfall was better this season so we all expected a very good harvest. The outbreak of fall army worm undermines what we expected would be a different story,” Mulila Mitti said by phone from Nairobi, where the FAO is held a meeting to discuss the infestation.

Still in the same meeting experts said that spotting the pest early when it is still a larva is key to prevention. They also warn that unless the spread of the fall army worm is contained, the attack is likely to result to a crisis.

Counties that have been invaded by the worms are Nakuru, Trans Nzoia,Kwale, Uasin Gishu, Taita Taveta, Busia and Bungoma.

Why it is considered a threat

It is of unknown origin – Governments, communities and farmers have no previous experience of dealing with the new pest. In other words there hasn’t been a permanent way of dealing with the pest since its origin is unknown.

It travels over a long distance – The adult moth migrates long distances and that’s how it spreads to many places in the world.

It is very invisible – The fall army worm goes right into the stem of maize plants, concealing itself from being seen and preventing farmers from spotting the problem early.

It is very destructive – This pest targets maize and other cereal crops, but it also attacks cotton, soybean, and potato and tobacco crops. When it does invade, up to three-quarters of the crop can be destroyed.

Some solutions have been suggested according to a BBC new report such as use of insecticides in its early stages, burning the crops, digging trenches, employing natural predators, like birds, to eat the worms.

A long term solution should be decided to avoid Kenya being banned on exporting its agricultural products, like other countries which have been confirmed with outbreaks, have faced.

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