Duck farming becomes good income source in Rajshahi -The Asian Age

Earning money from duck farming and a grocery shop has now become a consistent source of income, which is gradually increasing due to rising local demands.Duck products, such as eggs and meat, have a great demand in the local markets. So, commercial duck farming is being adjudged as a great source of earning.

Many successful farmers are making a standard profit from their duck farming business. Duck farming has also become a stable employment source. Young unemployed educated people are joining the business. Hundreds of poor and marginal families have become economically solvent by rearing ducks. There are more than 2,500 duck farms in Rajshahi division comprising eight districts and its farming has become more profitable and sustainable, where beel areas and wetlands are situated.

Rakesh, who suffered the curse of a long-period of jobless situation, is now enthusiastic about further expansion of his business in the days to come as his business is contributing a lot to the society in many ways. "I bring one-day-old duck chicks and rear them for four months till they start giving eggs. Every day I have to spend around Tk5,000 for their food, medicine and my employee's salary. The upazila livestock office supplies vaccines," he said.

He said he now gets 900 eggs daily on an average throughout the year and makes profit around Tk1.2 lakh per month. "Saidur is an intelligent and hardworking duck farmer and we provide him with support like vaccines, advice etc. His effort has opened up a new horizon of rearing ducks in the area," said Upazila Livestock Officer Dr Ismail Haque.

MonwaraKhatun, 43, a resident of Pirijpur village under Godagari upazila, has been able to oust her poverty cycle after finding the way of a better livelihood through self-employment. She said duck farming is inexpensive, simple and commercially viable. Earning money from duck rearing and a grocery shop has now become a consistent source of income, which is gradually increasing due to rising local demands.

Prof Dr Jalal Uddin Sarder of the Department of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science of Rajshahi University, said women, particularly the housewives, are mostly involved in rearing ducks of indigenous species.Ducks need less expensive, simple and non-elaborate housing facilities resulting in very less cost for setting up commercial duck farming businesses. They are very hardy birds and they need less care or management.

They can adopt themselves with almost all types of environmental conditions. The ducks are mostly fed home-made feed in addition to what they are deriving from scavenging facilities.Most of the farmers provided rice polish, boiled rice and broken rice as supplementary feed ingredients to ducks either singly or in combination.

High price and scarcity of feed during the dry season were the major constraints affecting duck production. Use of natural feed resources in an increasing manner may help overcoming the feed problem.Regular vaccination and the use of cost-effective balanced diets can have a decisive effect on duck rearing. As a whole, there are great potentials for an improvement of native duck production in the region by means of nutritional and management engineering, Prof Jalal Sarder added.