See the step-by-step guide on how to start cattle farming in Nigeria. Cattle farming in Nigeria like any other type of farming, is profitable if you know the secrets of the business, have the money to invest, you are able to manage the animals well, and understand different ways to create wealth from the business.
This article will show you how to start the business and different ways you can make money doing cattle farming.
Why Should You Do Cattle Farming Business?
You can extract many products from cattle that you can sell apart from beef, cheese and milk. The products are:
1) Hides and Skin which is for making leather shoes, belts and bags.
2) Cow bone for making china wares, jewelry and flutes.
3) Some Cow organs are for making drugs.
4) Cow dung is manure to improve crop yield in farms.
5) Cow hoof is a major raw material for making fire extinguishers.
How to Start Cattle Farming in Nigeria
We have shown you other ways you can make money from a cattle farm apart from selling meat and milk.
From the information you have read up to this point, you can see that there is a large market for products from cattle farming. Moreover, only a few Nigerians are Vegetarians, while many consume mostly cattle meat and so there is no doubt that cattle farming is profitable.
I guess you are now ready to venture into the business but feel some fear because you have not done this before and, so you need someone to hold your hands. Search no further, because this article will give you the secrets you need to start the business.
As you know by now any person serious about doing any business must have a plan. Hence, to start cattle farming in Nigeria, you should start it by writing a business plan.
Catle farming Business Plan
First gather all the information you need and write a business plan for cattle farming. Inside the document, state the exact part of the market you want to fill, how you will produce and market your product, your major competitors, the unique advantage you have over others, your management teams experience and how you will get money to start, etc.
Start Up Capital to start Cattle Farming
It is capital-intensive to start cattle farming in Nigeria so you may have to reach out to family, friends, and use personal savings to start it.
However, if the money you raised from those sources is not enough, then you can get a long term-loan from a bank that promotes the agricultural sector.
Once you get money to start the farm, get a place …
Best Cattle farming Location
Select a quiet environment where you have large expanse of land. Check the place to confirm that there are no tse-tse flies or other pests and diseases that are harmful to cattle in that environment.
Pasture and Source of Water
Get a large field with green grass and fence it with barbed-wire to prevent your cattle from wandering off. Cattle are herbivorous animals which mean they eat grass, roughage, legumes and green leaves.
Get a clean source of water within the farm where the animals can go for a drink after grazing.
During dry season supplement feeding with fodder and crop remains, and give cattle mineral concentrates all through the year.
Whether the farm is large or small, you would need a few experienced attendants to help you run the business.
These staff will make sure the cattle feed well and drink enough water, and spot sick ones or those in heat or pregnant and follow strict vaccination schedule for your cattle, etc.
Types of Cattle Production
You can divide Cattle farming all over the world into three kinds: beef, dairy, and dual purpose, and Cattle farming in Nigeria is no exception to the rule.
1) Cattle Farming for Beef Production
Many cattle for beef production grow on large farms, but as they mature from calves into cows, you keep them in feedlots and feed them until they are fat enough for slaughter.
2) Cattle farming for Dairy Production
A second type of cattle farming is Dairy Farming where you cultivate crops as feed for cows purely for production of milk and the making of other milk products such as butter, ice cream and cheese.
3) Cattle farming for Dual-purpose Production
The third method of cattle farming is dual-purpose. In this system of cattle farming, you select some cattle and breed them for production of meat and milk.
Where to Get Cattle to Start Your Farm
Start with the number you can handle but make sure you buy more Cows (female cattle) than bulls (male cattle). Feed them and let them reproduce before you start selling or slaughtering them for money.
Visit various cattle farms to buy cattle that are fit and healthy. Make sure you get proof of their health status from the owners of the farms you patronize.
Types of Cattle to Buy For Your Farm
If you want to start cattle farming in Nigeria, you should know that there are different types of cattle for producing milk and meat. Depending on the type of farming you are doing, get the ones that are best for you.
When you wish to start cattle farming in Nigeria, buy cattle from the tropical regions so that they can survive in this environment.
Location and climate affects bulls from producing at its peak, so take note of these facts when you buy animals to start your farm.
- For diary (milk) production, buy Sokoto and Adamawa Gudali, Bunaji, Rahaji, Friesians, and White Fulani Zebu cows.
- For beef (meat) cattle production buy Muturu, N‘dama, Kuri and Keteku.
Matured Cattle for Sale
You can feed cattle, rear for two years, and start selling them. Remove their horns so that they do not hurt each other or your staff.
The weight of healthy grown cattle is from 450 kilograms upwards. When they get to this weight, you can prepare them for sale to buyers if you are raising them for meat only.
Get In-depth Knowledge of the Business from Experts
As you begin cattle farming in Nigeria, you should try to get detailed knowledge from experts so that you run the farm well.
Hire a consultant and go for seminars to upgrade your knowledge in cattle production and livestock farming in general. For instance, you should know when a cow is in heat, pregnant or sick.
Signs to Watch Out For When a Cow Is In Heat
Heat is the fertile period in a cow’s reproductive cycle when she is ready to mate with a bull. The cow is in heat and displays the following signs at every 21 days interval.
The cow urinates often, vulva produces clear discharge and widens, sniffs, curls its lip, presses chin on other cows, is restless, mounts other cows and allow other cows to mount it, milk production drops, etc.
When you notice these signs, send the bulls in to do the necessary job early.
Signs That Show a Cow is Pregnant
When a Cow is pregnant, the udder becomes bigger and if you check her you will see heartbeat of the fetus.
Other signs include forming of a seal in the cervix to protect the fetus, and Bulls no longer go near the pregnant cow during the gestation (pregnancy) period of 9 months.
Market for Your Cattle
There are special Markets for selling cattle in all parts of the country. People will buy them for meat and milk production, for making cheese, ice cream and butter or for starting a cattle farm in Nigeria, etc.
You can supply meat direct to meat sellers in the market, sell cattle to butchers, sell cut and sliced packed meat to super markets.
Parts of Cattle to Sell After Slaughter
You can sell hides and skin to shoe and bag manufacturers, export cow bone for making china wares, jewelry and flutes, sell some cow organs to pharmaceutical companies, cow dung to farmers and the hoof to manufacturers of fire extinguishers.
As you consider whether to start cattle farming in Nigeria or not, you can confirm from the list of products you extract from cattle, that there are no wastes as even the dung is manure.
Because of how valuable they are, make sure you hire an animal doctor for your cattle.
Hire a Veterinary Doctor
Get a Veterinary doctor to look after the cattle in your farm, to vaccinate them and make sure they are healthy. His role is to diagnose and treat cattle of diseases and fix any that is injured.
How to Find Out Whether Your Cattle Are Sick
Signs to look out for include loss of appetite, high temperature, weight loss, being less active, etc. If you notice any or all of these symptoms of sickness, call the Veterinary Doctor you hired for your farm animals to give them the necessary care to prevent premature death from diseases.
Cattle Diseases and Pests
You should look out for signs of these diseases and pests such as Foot and mouth diseases, rabies, bovine pleura pneumonia, rinderpest, trypanosomiases, tick, heartwater, redwater, and gall sickness that attack cattle, and call your Veterinary Doctor when you notice them to prevent an outbreak of epidemic.
Join Cattle Farmers Associations
Join cattle farm owners union to help you get current information about cattle business, get government funding and take advantage of better ways to sell your cattle profitably.
Read Also: How profitable is poultry farming in Nigeria
It is lucrative to start Cattle farming in Nigeria; however startup capital is a major barrier to entry apart from fear of failure, and lack of modern ranches.
We have distilled the necessary information you need to start your own cattle farm without fear, so go out there and launch yours today.
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