Three important points to know – breeding turkeys at home for beginners
Tell me what is important to know and should be considered when planning turkey breeding at home for beginners? We used to keep ducks for our own use. But grandchildren appeared, and such meat would be too fat for them. So we decided to buy a couple of dozen turkey poults so that the children would have dietary meat.
Although turkeys require investment and attention, everything pays off quickly. These majestic birds gain weight well, they make excellent hens, and their meat is very tasty and dietary. Breeding turkeys at home for beginners is a great solution, even on a small scale. And when it turns out to increase the livestock and put up carcasses for sale, then all the costs of growing and fattening can be “recaptured” in a year.
Breeding turkeys at home for beginners – the main aspects
On the one hand, turkeys are the most absurd bird with a terrible temperament, especially males. They absolutely do not tolerate competitors and build a strict hierarchy in the poultry yard. Only one turkey is “responsible” for the future offspring, which has the exclusive right to fertilize females. These birds eat a lot, but they also gain weight quickly, which cannot be compared with other poultry. And their eggs are larger than chicken eggs, and dietary, like the meat itself.
When planning turkey breeding, you should carefully study at least three important points:
- For what purpose the poultry will be raised – for meat or for obtaining eggs and further breeding. The choice of a particular breed depends on this..
- What conditions are needed for keeping poultry, which is quite demanding.
- How to feed turkeys to gain weight quickly.
In addition, it is important to take into account some disadvantages: turkeys are more likely to get sick than the rest of the bird, and especially young animals. And they are easy to overfeed, because they eat often and a lot, which leads to obesity..
Which breed to choose
The breed matters, especially if egg-laying individuals are needed, and meat turkeys cannot boast of this. Their maximum productivity is no more than 120 eggs per year, which will not be enough for breeding. But it will be possible to fatten them for meat in just six months, and broilers in 3 months..
Turkeys are the best brood hens and mothers that easily take other people’s chicks into the family. If you need eggs, then it is worth starting such egg breeds as:
- white Moscow;
- Tikhoretskaya black.
For fattening for meat, breeds are chosen that quickly gain weight, for example:
- Hybrid Converter;
- white broad-breasted.
Requirements for the conditions of keeping turkeys
The poultry house must meet the main requirements – it must be spacious, dry, warm and light, and more specifically:
- for each adult you need at least 0.5 sq. m. area and a separate roost with a distance of 0.6 m from the neighboring one;
- the litter should be changed at least twice a week so that it does not have time to get wet;
- drafts and dampness are unacceptable, this makes turkeys sick;
- for the prevention of parasites in the poultry house, containers with sand and ash are placed;
- in winter, the temperature in the room should not fall below 10 ° C warm, and in summer you need to make sure that it is not too hot there;
- for layers, they provide daylight hours up to 12 hours, for the rest, 7 hours of illumination with an ordinary lamp will be enough.
Turkeys, which are provided with walking, grow faster and get sick less. In addition, a daily walk will help to avoid obesity and will provide an opportunity to diversify the diet with pasture green food..
How and what to feed
The hatched turkey poults are fed every 2 hours, and when they are a week old, they switch to 6 meals a day. Individuals from 2 months and layers are allowed to eat 4-5 times a day. For an adult bird, three meals are enough if the food is balanced..
The main component of the diet is cereals – up to 65%. In addition, turkeys should be given:
- greens and vegetables;
- vitamins and premixes;
- bone and fish meal;
- chalk and limestone;
- some salt;
- wet mash;
- wheat bran and sunflower meal.
In summer, the bird should be allowed to “graze” where the turkeys can find juicy grass. And in winter, they will gladly enjoy dry brooms of nettle, aspen, birch or poplar branches..