Sunday, February 23, 2014

Savera Farms Goat Operations - 6 months hence


Massaging my mommy

Savera Farms got into Animal husbandry last July with a couple of dozen Tellacherry and Kanni goats. So far we have had a good run with as many births and a couple more bulk purchases. In a few months, our herd was over 100 strong. Entry into animal husbandry was a strategic decision to minimize the risk from our land crops (Mango & Moringa) and capture the opportunity of increased meat consumption. We have not limited ourselves to just the meat segment but are breeding pureline Tellacherry goats as well. In another a couple of months, we should be ready with our first batch of kids for sale.




Blue eyed buck!

Tertiary benefits include collection of manure. During our initial analysis, manure volumes were marginal at best. Over the months, we have developed ways to increase our manure. Fresh manure is briefly dried and mixed with urine soaked soil. Later this mixture is moved to a compost pit for curing. Over the past 4 months, we have been able to fill 2 pits. Into this pit we also add other organic matter such as Moringa waste. Each pit should produce about 40-50 tractor loads of enriched soil and manure in about 4 months.



King of the cell

At Savera Farms, we hope to be able to introduce artificial insemination (AI) in the near future. There has been a lot of research done in this field in recent years. Bovine AI has been particularly successful while small ruminant AI has seen successfully pregnancy rates of up to 25-30%. Govt. of Kerela is spearheading field trials in this space in India using Tellacherry goats. While current techniques provide lower pregnancy rates, AI can be useful for cross breeding and to prevent issues related to inbreed of animals. 




Sibling love!

Goats at our farm are given nutritious and diverse feed ranging from CO4, Agathi, Subabul, Tamarind leaves, Neem leaves, Azolla, Bajra and Maize fodder, in addition to concentrate feed. They are dewormed every 3 months and have been vaccinated with PPR and ETV. If any of you are planning to start a new farm, we would be happy to provide mature breeding animals with prior kidding history and practical advice, invaluable for a new operation!

22 comments:

  1. Although so much technology involved and intelligence used here but ultimately it is for killing poor animals in name of farming and earning money. What could be more shameful thing and there is no need for you to be proud of it.

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    Replies
    1. You're right, the animals are being used for food. However, at our operations the quality of life, including food and medical care for the animal is much better compared to other operators who do 'factory farming'. Personally, we feel there are much greater causes for shame - killing for pleasure, killing in the name of god, killing for power!

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    2. For that matter Mr. Anonymous, even trees, crops have life. You cut them to eat everyday.

      Its invidual choice what farming they do, you cannot super impose your mindset on others.

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    3. Really appreciate the way Techie answered for "Anonymous" comments. We all have to be grateful for the work Techie is doing. He is a "DUKE" (One of the prestigious college in US) engineer, developed a huge farm in a dry district (1000s of KM away from his native place), providing employment for many families.
      Adulteration of any food product is bad; including coffee, hormones injected/ feed broiler chickens etc. What Tehie is doing is providing a healthy food for the society which have malnutrition people who need meat to be little healthy. He can be proud and more than that.

      Best Regards
      Boopathy
      Boston, USA

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  2. Well, to each their own. I have also decided against animal husbandry on our farm.

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  3. I agree, Animal farming for killing must be avoided. It doesn't mean I am advocating killing animal for pleasure, name of god or power.

    Animal farming for food like milk is always welcome.

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  4. Lets not impose our views on others. Savera Farms is not doing anything illegal.

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  5. You mentioned 80x25 shde divided into 16 compartments of 10x10, can house 100 adults and 108 kids.. Can you share how many adults and how many kids can be accomdated in this 10x10? Is this same for Sheep?
    Also can you share few pictures of food tray etc?

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    Replies
    1. As a general rule of thumb, Sheep accommodation is very comparable to goat. With that said, a 10x10 cell should be able to accommodate 8-10 mature animals. Our average occupancy is usually around 6-7 adults with attached kids as necessary. We reserve 1-2 cells for mating or pregnant goats. I do not have any food tray pictures at the moment but we have re-purposed PVC pipes which seems to have worked out quite well.

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  6. Kudos to running a humane and cruelty free farm. I love your entrepreneurial zeal in all your endeavors. Is your Tellachery stock for Broiler(Meat) or Dairy purpose? How do you compare Kanni & Tellachery in these areas? How prolific are they ?

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Nitin. Our Tellacherry herd is primarily for breeding and meat purposes. In comparison, Kanni is a smaller variety with less bone-in meat weight. Kanni grows slower as well but is the preferred meat variety in Sivagangai area. If all aspects were equal Tellacherry, Sirohi and Jamanapuri are better return on investments.

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  7. Sir,

    I have been following your blogpost for quite sometime and from my side , I'm doing a little of High density Plantation ( Mangoes ) for the last 1 1/2 years. Do you have any recommendations for saving the plants during the peak summer period ( April/May ), As water scarcity looks on the higher side as rains were pretty disappointing last year.

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    Replies
    1. Proper water supply and nutrient application is especially important in UHD method since we do not allow the tree to grow over a certain size and width. Please pay additional attention to regular pruning, preferably right before monsoons set in. The UHD economics work out only if there are multiple branches, developing into a thick canopy which produce an above average yield. Try mulching to preserve moisture and drip for efficient irrigation.

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  8. Where did you purchase your Ear tags from? can u give the contact details of the shop and rates?
    For concentrate feed, from where are you purchasing it?[contact details and also rate]

    Thanks

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    1. You will get tags from any vet store or from your local dist/village animal husbandry dept. Fodder ranges from 15-20/ Kg. Kindly refer to our previous posts..

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  9. No updates since long. Hope you are well and your project is also going great guns.

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    1. Very much alive and kicking.
      We have been busy with procuring and marketing of produce. It is a tedious process and very time consuming. Will update soon!

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  10. Nikhil Bhai, May i get u r e-mail id pls.

    AGN

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  11. Dear Savera Farms,

    You are doing an outstanding job in sharing best practices, I have been following your posts for quite sometime. I am planning to set up a goat farm in Hyderabad and have done some research on that. Do you supply goats to other farms? I am looking for Thalachery goats, not sure if they suit Hyderabad climatem if not some other breed which suits Hyderabad. I heard Black Bengal Goat is best for breeding but i was unsuccessfull in getting information regarding where to purchase it from.

    Your response is much appreciated!

    Thanks
    "T" Farms.

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    Replies
    1. Hi T farms,
      Hyderabad climate should not be a problem, till the time they are in covered housing. We have Tellacherry males and females for sale. Kindly mail me at info@saverafarms.com with your number and requirements. Thanks..

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    2. Thanks Savera. I sent you an email.

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  12. Dear Brother, Now a days no postings from your side. What happen ? we are eagerly waiting for your updates

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