Peacock farming is not a new business idea. From the ancient time, people like bird’s egg and meat on their table. People raise various types of birds for the purpose of producing meat, eggs, and also for their beauty.
By Abdul Samad
Raising various types of poultry birds are one of the best and lucrative business ventures. Along with profit, people usually keep various types of birds for the purpose of producing fresh food. Some people also raise birds as a hobby and for entertaining purpose.
Generally two legged creatures who have feathers are called birds. In other words, birds are the back boned creatures who have the ability to fly and to control body temperature. And the birds which are raised commercially for the purpose of producing meat, egg or features are known as poultry. Peacock is also a poultry bird, like ducks, chicken, pigeon, turkey etc. Poultry farming business is very profitable and becoming popular day by day. Here we are describing something important for starting profitable peacock farming business.
Peacock in The Poultry Industry
Duck, chicken, quail etc. are most common and popular poultry birds. Most of the people consider chickens as poultry, but that’s not true. Actually all types of birds raised for their meat or egg production are called poultry. Most of the people in rural areas raise some birds, such as pigeon, ducks, chicken, swan, quail etc. for the purpose of producing meat or eggs. And all these birds are poultry. Peacocks are also among those poultry birds.
Nowadays peacock farming is considered as a profitable poultry farming business. You can raise peacock commercially in both rural and urban areas. Peacock farming can play an important role for reducing unemployment problem and help to create a new way of earnings. And commercial peacock farming business can help to develop the socio economic condition of a country or nation.
Economic Importance of Peacock
Peacocks are very beautiful and their feathers attract almost all types of people. The meat of peacock is also very tasty, nutritious and healthy. But right now, peacock’s meat is not highly available in the local market. And the price of peacock meat is very high. Although peacock’s meat has a high demand in some places around the world, especially for it’s unique taste. For this reason peacock farming is absolutely very profitable like pigeon, chicken, ducks and other poultry farming business. Peacock features also have huge demand and value for decorating house. A general person who have never seen any peacock yet, is also a fan of their feathers. Peacock feathers have a great popularity internationally. Many luxurious shop sell peacock feathers, due to it’s high demand and popularity. Although commercial peacock farming business is not so popular yet. Right now, you can see peacocks in a few farms and in the zoo. Peacocks are highly available both in the wild and in commercial farms. Peacocks are suitable for commercial raising both in the town and village areas. Contact with your nearest wildlife service centers and learn whether commercial peacock farming is permitted in your area or not.
Features of Peacock
The peacock has iridescent blue-green or green colored plumage. Head, neck, van and throat protector is little blue colored. Both peacock and peahens have crest atop the head. Their legs are reddish. Peacocks have very attractive tail and they use their beautiful tail for attracting the peahens. You can see ‘eyes’ on their tail, when they fan their tail. Peacocks dance raising their tail plumage to attract peahens, which is very impressive and mind blowing. Peacocks always love to stay in a group. Usually you will see 1 peacock with 5 to 6 peahens in a group. In the wild peacock move over the ground for a short period, most of the time they stay upon the large trees. Grains, insects, snakes, small fish, frogs, etc are their favorite food. Peahens lay about 3 to 5 eggs by making a small hole in the ground. The eggs are off white colored. And it takes about 27 to 30 days for hatching their eggs. Average life expectancy of peafowl is around 35 years. They reach sexual maturity at their 3 to 4 years of age.
Domestic Peacock Farming
If you want to raise peafowl on your property, then you have to feed them nutritious foods and make a suitable environment for them. Peafowls are omnivorous, their regular includes wheat, rice, vegetables, seeds, insects, snails etc. Papaya, melon and other fruits are also their favorite food. Along with providing nutritious food, you have to supply sufficient amount of fresh and clean water daily.
There are many peafowl breeds available around the world. Usually peafowls have three species and rest are the hybrids or crosses. Some common peafowl breeds are Black Shoulder, Buford Bronze, Charcoal, Cameo, Green Peafowl (Java Green), Opal, Oaten, Spalding, Purple, White, Pied etc. Most of the people like this breed mainly for their mild and timid nature.
Peafowls do not bathe in water, like other pheasants. They clean themselves by vigorously rubbing their plumage in dust and dry soil. They love to have dust baths. Indian blue peafowls are the mostly raised domestic species and very popular for their mild and timid nature. Green peafowls are aggressive in nature and they are less common as domestic bird.
In case of domestic peafowl farming, you have to ensure adequate housing and good environment. Usually 100 square feet space required for each bird. Adjust the housing space according to the length of peacock’s trains. Generally peacock trains can be over 5 feet long. Their shed must have to be at least 8 feet tall. You can use chicken wire for the walls and roof. Provide a wooden shelter similar to a small shed or barn. You can bed this area with straw and keep a warming light inside. Provide large shed or barn, if you have nesting peahens. Use hanging dishes inside the shed for providing foods, and keep the water elevated so that you do not get droppings in it. You will need to cover their pen, because peafowls are great flyers. Usually peafowl like to roost at night. You have to make suitable roosting place for them inside the house. Ensure well ventilation system. Make the house suitable enough for preventing all types of predators, such as raccoon wild dogs or foxes.
Peafowls are omnivorous. They eat almost everything whether any plant or animal matter. Wild figs, berries and nuts are favorite foods in season, but seeds, grain and leaves are staple items all year. They also love to catch and eat mice, frogs, small snakes, various types of small mammals, various types of insects such as ants, grasshoppers, termites etc. Peafowl don’t drink water frequently like other domestic poultry birds. Usually they drink water during their midday rest and while eating in late afternoon. They drink again just before going to roost. You can also feed your peafowl a wide range of crops and fruits such as bananas, chilly, groundnut, paddy, tomato etc. If you have any peachicks, you can feed them turkey starter feed, boiled chicken eggs etc.
Usually peafowl’s breeding season starts with the monsoon. There are some advantages of mating during this season. Peachicks benefit from the abundance of food resulting from the rains. Peacocks show their trains and dance for attracting the peahens. Each peacock mate with 5 to 6 peahens in his group during this season. After successful mating, peahens lay eggs. Usually it takes about 27 to 30 days to hatch their eggs.
Peacock farming is well-spread throughout the world and it is considered as a very lucrative business. Most of the peacock farmer raise them for the purpose of producing their colorful feathers. Peacock feathers have a huge demand around the world, especially in the European countries. As far as we have learned, in some places price of a single feather ranges between 1 to 5 euros. Although the price depend on the size. Peacocks change their plumage once a year and you can get about 150 to 200 feathers from and adult bird every year. If you have any local customers, then you can also sell eggs and live birds.
Department of Poultry Sciences, MNS University of Agriculture Multan, Pakistan.