Amateur poultry farmers have recently, in addition to traditional domestic birds, also started breeding more rare species of birds - pigeons, especially meat pigeons. Even in antiquity, the great scientist Avicenna appreciated the dietary properties of pigeon meat, he also recommended its use in patients.
And indeed, the meat of these birds is easily digestible, small-fibered and very tasty! Having built a large dovecote, you can end up with a fairly profitable business. Moreover, the breeding of meat pigeons - this is not all that you can do.
Bird species by appointment
Depending on the functions performed, pigeons are divided into groups. It is recommended to keep different types of birds in the dovecote, then the field for activities will be much wider.
- Meat pigeons (kings, strassers, roman), as you probably already understood, are bred for the purpose of subsequent slaughter and eating. Such birds have high reproduction and very quickly gain weight.
- Breeding of Uzbek pigeons (short-billed), blowjob, jacobins and other breeds has a decorative function. These birds have a beautiful color, but do not fly high and long. Some species are distinguished by the fact that they have a large goiter, a lush tail or a collar, feathery legs. Such pigeons are usually used at various celebrations, often at weddings. You can rent them and earn good money on it.
- Viennese Turman, Tula, Uzbek fighting, hryvnia - pigeons performing a sporting function. They are wonderful flyers, participants of exhibitions and competitions. Such birds in the air can be up to eight hours, and go up so that they hide from the eyes of observers.
What you need to know
Before you start breeding pigeons, you need to find out all the features and habits of these birds, because they are quite different from other birds. First, pigeons are monogamous. This means that they form strong pairs that never collapse, unless the death of one spouse occurs. Secondly, it is a flock of birds. That is, they are kept in groups, and with significant size.
Thirdly, pigeons are the only representatives of birds, producing so-called bird's milk, which is in fact a kind of mush. It stands out in adults (both females and males) as an epithelium of the goiter walls. This gruel pigeons feed the chicks in the first days of their lives.
How to choose a pigeon
For the organization of business should be purchased young birds. The choice of a quality individual is a whole science. Therefore, we recommend that you first read the literature about the breed that you want to purchase. Knowledge of all the subtleties will take some time, but then efforts will be rewarded - breeding pigeons will become profitable. If you are worried that you can not cope, resort to the help of golubevoda.
So first make sure the bird is clean. Then examine it: the pigeon should be trimmed, slim, with even, not plucked feathers, not sluggish, but not aggressive, his eyes should not tear. Open the wing of the feathered and inspect it in the light: the presence of holes indicates that the bird is infected with parasites (perojedy and puffy eaters).
To understand whether a feathery louse, you need to inspect the beak and anus. Also pay attention to what kind of flight a bird has, especially when you choose sports individuals. If your goal is breeding pigeons, then, of course, you need to buy birds in pairs, so that they give offspring. It is not at all difficult to determine the spouses: in pairs, the dove usually coos, and in response, the dove fluffs feathers and bows his head. But if the birds are fighting among themselves, then most likely they are individuals of the same sex.
How to determine the age of the pigeon
This can be done on the legs and wax. When the feathery is five months old, the ceres becomes gradually white in color - this indicates puberty. In the future, it increases in size, with time it becomes more and more, which allows you to determine the age of birds up to three or four years.
Then it becomes difficult. In general, pigeons live up to fifteen or twenty years, but can only reproduce at the age of ten years. Older individuals are not suitable as producers: firstly, they are unproductive, and secondly, they give very weak offspring. Therefore, you need to pair only strong, purebred and perfectly healthy birds.
First you need to think about the room. Birds are usually kept in specially built pigeon-houses, aviaries, large cages or nurseries. The choice of a particular place depends on the type of individual and its behavior in the flock. Cages for pigeons should be kept clean, peat or sand most often fall asleep to the bottom.
After winter, disinfection and general cleaning should be carried out. It is recommended to keep separate species of birds in different cages. Sick pigeons must have a personal place. New individuals also should not immediately run to the old-timers - check them first for the presence of disease.
Only decorative birds can be released from cages, which always find their home and return to the owner. “Why bother with such birds at all, because there is no use for them?” Beginners often ask. In fact, they are mistaken. For example, breeding Uzbek pigeons with short beaks can bring good profits - they can be used in wedding events.
Remember the tradition: the bride and groom launch two white doves into the sky? So, you can rent birds for such celebrations. But the birds must be trained, otherwise there is a risk that they will fly away and not return. Training should begin gradually: first move off near the cage and let the birds out, then increase the distance. You can cordon off the area for security.
The most common option for feeding pigeons is the cereal mixture, while the most suitable grain is barley. In addition, it is necessary to give fruits and vegetables to the birds in a ground form. If your task is to breed pigeons for meat, you should use egg-pea, potato-pea porridge for fattening, and add fat to food.
Vitamins, calcium, iron, phosphorus, magnesium are also required for the maintenance of health of the birds - these elements contain chalk and fine sand. Currently, a large number of various blends are produced, which in the composition have the necessary nutrients and trace elements.
An adult eats about fifty grams of feed per day. Breeding pigeons is a rather expensive business, because grain mixtures are expensive. In winter, it will be necessary to feed the birds even more intensively - a large amount of food will allow them not to freeze. Do not forget about drinking. Drinking water with clean water should always be in the cells. Also pigeons can be given herbal decoctions. Breeding pigeons requires intensive fattening. You can still buy birds by chicks, but when they already know how to peck feed by themselves.
The birds begin to multiply somewhere in the beginning of spring, so prepare the aviary in advance: clean the garbage, dry it, put up a nesting device (make skeletons from the branches and install wooden flat boxes with low sides, fill the corners with a mixture of fine sawdust and plaster) . You can use several methods of breeding birds.
- Accidental (natural) mating - occurs in March-April, when males are launched to females. The disadvantage of this method is that as a result, far from the best and not the strongest individuals can turn out.
- Linear breeding is based on the precise determination of the inheritance of the qualities and effects of mating by birds.
- Inbreeding is the pairing of related pigeons (sisters and brothers of the same generation or parents and offspring). This method is used to improve the purity of the breed.
- Mating of birds similar in appearance.
- Mating of non-related individuals.
Of all those listed, of course, the first method is considered the simplest, but if you want to get strong beautiful birds, you need to use the rest. At the end of the mating, the female begins to settle the nest, and the male is looking for material for the arrangement: these are different twigs, twigs and the like.
Even pigeons hatch eggs together, alternately. On average, the process takes four weeks. It is impossible to disturb the birds at such a time, check the nests when the birds are absent. The female usually blows two eggs at a time, there are up to three clutches a year.
Breeding pigeons will require an initial investment of at least 200 thousand rubles, provided that you buy only a couple of dozen birds and a few cages. The main expenses are the purchase of individuals, feed, enclosures, implements (rakes, buckets, water canisters, shovels, scrapers, brooms, shovels, etc.), as well as the rent of land if you do not have one. The simplest cell can be bought for 15-20 thousand rubles.
The cost of pigeons varies depending on the type: the price of a pair of ordinary white - about two thousand rubles, and for a couple of decorative or sports will have to pay from three thousand and more. One ton of feed mixture costs an average of 4-5 thousand rubles.
The payback period will depend directly on the type of business: when breeding meat pigeons, it will take about half a year to breed the young and feed them to the desired weight. It will be possible to sell one carcass for about 400-500 rubles. But remember that a business will never be successful unless a marketing strategy is developed. Think in advance about product distribution channels.
Thus, pigeon meat can be offered not only to wholesalers, but also, for example, to owners of restaurants specializing in delicacies. In the case of breeding decorative birds, organize advertising services in wedding salons. Do not forget about such events as the graduation party and the last bell, because pigeon salutes are also being made there. Among other things, sometimes birds are rented for photo shoots, creating videos. In general, the field of activity is large. Dare!
How to start breeding pigeons?
Growing pigeons, as well as breeding parrots at home, may well become a promising and profitable business. But this type of business is quite specific, you need to be a professional in this field of activity, to understand all the nuances of breeding, maintaining and growing pigeons. Most often, pigeon breeding is a hobby rather than a business. Many people breed birds exclusively for pleasure, and at first, they do not perceive their activities as a way to generate income. And this is in vain, because you can really make money on breeding pigeons. How? We will talk about this in this article.
Choose a direction
- Cultivation of meat pigeons (Roman, Kings, Strassers) - this breed of pigeons is intended for slaughtering for meat. Birds of this breed have high reproduction and fast weight gain. Pigeon meat is considered a great delicacy, it has useful properties and high taste. The cost of pigeon meat is very high, which makes this area of business quite profitable.
- Breeding of Uzbek pigeons, Jacobins, air pipes for decorative purposes. These breeds of birds are characterized by a beautiful color and are grown exclusively for decorative purposes. Such pigeons are most often released at weddings and other events. The meaning of breeding is the training of birds, and renting them out.
- Growing pigeons for sporting purposes. The most appropriate breed: Tula, Uzbek fighting, hryvnia. These birds are bred for participation in exhibitions and various sports competitions.
Breeding pigeons is not much different from other species. The reproduction period goes through several successive stages:
- Mating games,
- Filling the nest and its arrangement,
- Laying and hatching eggs,
- The appearance of chicks,
- Feeding and caring for the chicks.
But still breeding pigeon meat breed has its own distinctive features.
Nestlings of this breed become completely independent from parents as early as 1 month. Meat breeds of pigeons are well-developed maternal instinct. The mass of pigeons compared to other species is small.
For a comfortable stay the birds of this species need a separate warm room and a enclosed enclosure for walking. It is necessary to maintain a certain air temperature in the dovecote (from +5 to + 20С). Set the desired temperature using insulation.
During breeding birds will take part of the litter on the arrangement of the nest. The litter should be changed immediately as necessary, so as not to dilute the dampness. Full cleaning should be done several times a year. At the time of cleaning pigeons transferred to a more peaceful place or on the street in the aviary.
The structure of the birds and the size of their wings do not allow them to fly. Because of this, they are forced to equip their nests right on the ground or floor.
There are certain features of feeding the meat type of birds. In the feed for birds need to add minerals. The diet of birds should consist of cereals and proteins. There should always be clean drinking water in the loft. It is best to equip them with a special convenient drinker. Water in the drinker needs to be changed every day. Slaked lime and eggshell are excellent as mineral additives.
Meat pigeons are simple in breeding and care, and not picky in food. Observance of all the rules when breeding this species brings a good income to the owners. Cultivation of meat breeds is very profitable and difficult.
Choice of meat breed (pigeon meat quality)Cultivation of pigeons of meat breeds has several interesting characteristics that everyone who has decided to engage in these types of poultry farming needs to know. First of all, it is worth noting that pigeons are unpretentious and very independent birds, which in the summer period are able to take care of the search for food themselves.
Also, pigeons have a number of differences from other representatives of birds:
- first, they belong to flock birds, which are kept mainly in large groups,
- secondly, pigeons are monogamous, that is, a pair formed once is very strong and never collapses (not counting the death of one of the partners),
- thirdly, pigeons are the only representatives of birds that produce the so-called "bird's milk", which they feed their chicks. This is a kind of gruel, which stands out in adult birds with the epithelium of the goiter walls. Moreover, this substance is released not only in females, but also in males, unlike mammals. "Bird's milk" is the main source of food for chicks in the first days of life.
Also, before you start the meat pigeons, you must familiarize yourself with the existing breeds in order to choose the most suitable one. Among the most productive breeds of pigeons are the following:
- "King" - originally from the USA, it is distinguished by the high fecundity of its representatives. With proper maintenance, pigeons quickly gain weight: in 45 days they reach an average weight of 700 g. In a year, the female "King" can produce about 18 good, well-fed chicks. Adult birds of this breed weigh an average of 650-800 g, and exhibition specimens sometimes reach a weight of one and a half to two kilograms. Slaughter weight of pigeons varies from 60% to 68% and depends on the conditions: when breeding birds exclusively in cages, the weight of the carcasses is much less than in conditions of limited range,
Big pigeon meat "Strasser"Bred in Western Europe, it features high performance. The weight of the male of this breed can reach 1.2 kg. At the age of 30 days, the weight of a pigeon is often 700 g. The meat at the Strassers is fine-fibrous. Slaughter weight of this breed reaches 60%."Roman" pigeons - the breed was bred in Italy, and improved further in France. The weight of adult males reaches 1-1.3 kg, females - up to 1.1 kg. Slaughter weight with proper care can reach 70%.
"Mondenskaya" Breed of pigeons hailing from France, Monde-Marsan. The weight of adult pigeons reaches 1.1 kg. For 30 days the young of this breed can be fattened to 700 gr. Slaughter meat output is 61%. Pigeons "Mondensky" breed have the highest index of massiveness among other meat breeds of pigeons, which is 28.7%,
При выборе птицы для разведения нужно в первую очередь обращать внимание на ее здоровье. Голубь не должен быть апатичным и вялым, глаза его должны быть чистыми, а перья — ровными, не общипанными. It is necessary to open the bird's wing and check if there are no holes in the feathers (a sign of infection with the puffed-up meal), of course, such a bird should not be bought.
It is also very important to purchase pigeons in pairs. In order to understand where the pair, put the birds in a box of two. If a pigeon coos and the dove fluffs the feathers and tilts its head, it means that there is a pair in front of you. If the birds are fighting, then they are individuals of the same sex.
Room for pigeons
Since pigeons are extremely unpretentious birds, a lot of space will not be needed to build a pigeon farm. Suitable attic room or superstructure in barns and warehouses. Of course, the ideal option is to build a separate room where pigeons will be kept. But this does not require large financial costs: suitable as an open-air cage with a tensioned net-rabitsy, and a typical house dovecote, where birds will rest and hide from the rain.
Regardless of the choice of premises, the main thing is that cats and other small predators could not enter the pigeon house territory. Therefore, it will not be superfluous to lift the pigeon house above the ground. When calculating the area for the pigeon house - it should be taken into account that 12 m² can hold up to 50 pigeons. After the arrangement of the premises, the bottom of the pigeon house should be sprinkled with sand, as this will facilitate cleaning in the future. Along the walls of the dovecote need to adjust the perch.
Preparation for nesting pigeons
Before the nesting season in dovecote, it is necessary to thoroughly clean and equip the nesting devices and the steaming boxes. It is imperative that the number of steaming boxes be greater than the pairs of pigeons in the dovecote. This will allow the pigeons to choose their own place for mating and not to fight for it.
For pairing it is convenient to use a nest box with a door. Boxes should be located as far from each other as possible so that birds can remember the location of their nest. After the pigeons form families, the mating boxes must be turned into nesting ones; for this, two nests are placed in each box, right and left.
In small dovecotes, you can arrange the nest without boxes, right on the racks. Then, the nests will need to be separated from each other by vertical walls. It should be borne in mind that the nesting boxes should be located so that they are sufficiently illuminated, but direct light does not fall into the nests. Before mating pigeons, the boxes are covered with soft bedding of hay or straw. When the birds shove their nests, you need to pour ashes or pyrethrum under them.
FatteningThe young are most exposed to various diseases during growth. Therefore, the feed must contain a sufficient amount of vitamins, nutrients and minerals. The first weeks after the hatching, young pigeons require a large amount of food. Reduce portions when the iris of young individuals becomes the same as in adult birds. In the morning the birds are given a small portion of food, and in the evening they increase it.
It is recommended to moisten the grain with a small amount of fish oil before feeding. To young pigeons grow well, they are fed a large number of wheat with barley and peas. After the young growth begins to fly in a flock with adult birds, the amount of wheat is reduced by 2 times, replacing it with equal parts of peas and wiki. The most common composition for feeding young animals: wheat 20%, peas and maize 10% each, barley 20% and millet 30%. The daily rate of such a mixture for 1 young bird is 40 g.
For weakened young individuals that are lagging behind in growth and development, more nutritious will be required. a mixture of wheat, corn grits, refined rice, wheat porridge and fodder yeast. Also in the mix you need to add 5 drops of fish oil, and in drinking water - glucose solution 5%.
Juveniles will require supplementation in the diet and in the form of succulent green fodder at the rate of 10 g per 1 bird per day. In the form of additives, boiled potatoes, porridge and bread are suitable. Flesh is fattened within 12-14 days. You should also make sure that before each meal the goiter of the bird is empty.
Bird slaughterBirds of meat breed of pigeons are usually slaughtered, usually between 28 and 35 days old. Before this, the bird is fattened with the seeds of dill, cumin, anise, to give the meat a savory taste of the game. To make the meat white and more tender, you can slaughter the bird with salted milk before slaughter. The day before slaughter, the birds are stopped to feed, this simplifies the gutting of carcasses and improves the quality of meat. Pigeons can be killed in the same way as other domestic birds.