Turkey breeding is a troublesome but perspective business. See below to find out why turkeys are better than chickens.
Today, we are going to visit a turkey farm situated outside Kazan.
Approaching the farm.
It is an old Soviet farm that doesn’t look like anything you expect to see there. You won’t find abandoned and half-destroyed buildings or broken equipment there. It’s well maintained and has clean and up-to-date farming machines.
Former owners used the farm for chicken and cow breeding and the farm really was a sorry sight. A few years ago it was transformed for turkey breeding.
Turkey breeding is twice as profitable as chicken breeding and thrice as profitable as pig breeding although it takes solid investments. Turkey is not very popular in Russia and people don’t know it’s much healthier than chicken, has lower calories and fat and is easy to digest.
Turkey you can find in supermarkets is mostly imported from the USA, France, etc. 20 years ago there were several large farms breeding turkeys in the country while there are just a few nowadays.
Not all of the buildings on the farm have been reconstructed yet but they plan to do it in future.
Turkeys living in this barn are just two weeks old.
They don’t cage their turkeys which conserves space. Besides, they can eat by themselves and move around the barn which gives them some sort of freedom.
Turkeys eat special formula feed for turkeys but chicken feed is Ok too. They also like green onions and garlic. Turkey chicks need a lot of care just like kids.
Unlike chickens, turkeys have poor health. They let turkey chicks go out when they are older than two weeks and when there is no rain. They also keep their turkeys away from the boiling sun. For the first 6 weeks, turkeys spend up to 6 hours walking outside. Farmers make sure there are no nettles in the yard because nettle stings may kill turkeys.
Turkeys lay eggs in March or April. Before that, their head and neck go red and the turkeys get uneasy. They inseminate their poultry using an incubator. Pairing with turkey cocks is unprofitable.
The turkey-hen covers 15 to 20 eggs for 29 days. Two-year old turkeys’ eggs have an eggshell thick enough not to get smashed by the poultry.
Let’s move to another barn where three-day old turkey chicks are kept.
A temperature of 36 degrees Celsius is maintained here.
There are several thousand turkey chicks in the barn.
Azat, the farm’s owner, also grows grain to feed his turkeys and for sale. He said this year’s drought would affect the harvest greatly.