Keeping Turkeys is one of the greatest poultry farming choice whether you are interested in small or large flocks. One key advantage with turkeys is that they can tolerate crowded conditions and still give you a maximum return on financial investment. Turkeys are increasingly becoming a dominant domestic bird in East Africa region by peasant farmers with commercial ambitions. Commercial turkeys are reared for breast meat for the growing hotel industry and the middle class affluent population. Turkeys provide inexpensive meat for a growing urban market eager to purchase it. Although they can be successfully raised in turkey “porches” and yards, they do best when they can have range or pasture on which to forage. Poults can be raised in a poultry house on on deep litter just like chicken. The key thing is to avoid contamination from droppings is essential. Wire mesh can effectively keep poults away from soiled litter in the case of an enclosed environment.
How to get turkeys for start up
If you are a starter in poultry farming www.nicehatchincubators.com recommends that you start in the least expensive way by buying day-old poults (chicks) from hatcheries or suppliers nearby. Alternatively, you can buy turkey hens and a gobbler (cock). Turkey eggs can be hatched naturally by turkey hens, by broody chickens, or in incubators. Turkey poults are fragile and need protection for the first two months. A mother will keep them warm and protect them, provided she herself has adequate feed, water, and shelter. The incubation period for eggs is 28 days. One turkey hen can brood up to 15 eggs. The more commercial and effective way is to brood artificially through the use of incubators.
Raising, feeding, watering turkeys
Turkey poults grow fast, therefore they need high-protein feed to keep up with this growth rate. Feed your poults on starter mash as they grow, their needs taper off after eight weeks to grower crumble or pellets with lesser percentage of protein. If turkeys are on pasture and not crowded, they will get some protein from the insects and worms as they forage through your farmland.
Hanging feeders and waterers, adjusted to the height of the birds’ eyes as they grow, will reduce
the amount of feed and water wasted as the birds dig around in it with their beaks. Sloppy waterers leave wet litter to ferment and foster disease-causing organisms. Feeders on the ground should not be filled more than half-full, to keep feed contained. Turkeys are perching birds that naturally roost in trees. Poults as young as two weeks old will look for a roost. They can be accommodated with2-inch-diameter poles or branches several inches above the ground. Make an allowance of per bird depending on the population you have intend to have on your farm. Mature turkeys need stronger roosts to handle their weight and size that will support them. For mature turkeys you can use up to 2-inch diameter poles and make an allowance at least 2 feet between each pole to allow ample room for them.
Turkeys do not require routine vaccinations; However, vaccines are available for several common diseases, including fowl cholera, turkey pox, and Newcastle disease. Check with local veterinarians to determine whether such protection is necessary in your area.