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How to Start a Grasscutter Business (Best Guide)

Food is a very essential and important basic need of human life and existence. The human body needs good and quality food to function well. This is the reason why agriculture remains relevant in Nigeria.

Agriculture business is still very lucrative because the only source of revenue generation for Nigeria over the years had been through the production and sale of crude oil. Only a few people are into commercial farming in Nigeria. There is a need for the attention of Nigerians to be diverted to the Agricultural sector. There are many untapped businesses you can venture into when you decide to look at the direction of agriculture.

It is not new to many that Nigeria is blessed with many natural resources and a large landmass of farmlands. That is why it would be easy for a Nigerian to make millions from agriculture as there are fertile lands and other resources that will make the business successful.

One of such businesses in agriculture you can venture in is Grasscutter farming business.

Grasscutter farming in Nigeria

Grasscutter is a little creature of the rodent family which is widely found in grassland areas. It is commonly called the Greater cane rate but its botanical name is Thryonomys swinderianus. Grasscutter meat is very valuable and widely eaten in different parts of Nigeria.

Over the years, Grasscutters have been hunted and sold to people because majority of these rodents are still gathered from the wild. This offers investors and those with a business mindset the opportunity of raising these rodents for the purpose of selling them to the consumers.

Grasscutter farming is the capturing and rearing of Grasscutters for commercial purposes.

Grasscutter farming in Nigeria is a good mini-livestock farming opportunity that is capable of generating income to you no matter what part of the country you live in. the profit prospects of this farming business is very huge and it is not capital intensive.

The fact that hunting is only practiced mostly in the rural parts of the country will give you as a Grasscutter farmer the fair advantage to supply for those living in the urban parts of the country.

Grasscutter farming in Nigeria has become an unknown goldmine because there is a very high demand for the meat because of its nutritional values. You can supply the Grasscutter meat to bars and restaurants because most people that patronize these places have a preference for bush meats.

Why you should go into Grasscutter farming in Nigeria

The rearing Grasscutter is fast because a mature female Grasscutter gives birth to an average of 4 babies in six months. You can also start with a little capital and then grow the business in the process.

There are plenty of reasons why you should consider starting your own Grasscutter farm in Nigeria. Below are a few of them.

Production of Meat: Grasscutter meat is always high in demand, which by far exceeds the supply. For the fact that it cannot be spotted easily in marketplaces, their scarcity makes their prices become relatively high. As said earlier, the meat contains protein and low fats and cholesterols which are good for the human body.

Source of income: rearing Grasscutter in Nigeria is a profitable business and you can make good morning from it. You can start with a small amount of capital and still yield profits that can run the business and still meet up with your daily needs. Grasscutter farming in Nigeria can put you in a better financial status than most of the so-called white-collar jobs.

Source of Employment: With the high rate of unemployed youths roaming about the streets in search of a job, this will be an opportunity for them to get a job and earn something decent for themselves. Nigerians depend too much on white-collar jobs, that is why there is still a high rate of unemployment. Starting a Grasscutter farming in Nigeria affords you the opportunity to employ others to join you and also earn.

Medical Purposes: Grasscutter meat also has its own medical value. Its pancreas has a high concentration of insulin used in treating diabetic patients. Many pharmaceutical companies use it as a key piece in manufacturing drugs used in treating diabetes. Eating of Grasscutter meat is also beneficial to hypertensive patients.

How to start Grasscutter farming in Nigeria

Starting Grasscutter farming in Nigeria is like rearing cattle, goats, or chickens. You don’t necessarily need a degree in Agricultural science or be a farmer before you can start. You can start your own Grasscutter farming in Nigeria as far as you following the right procedure and do the right thing.

1.     Business plan

Every business relies on a very good business plan to be successful. Having a good and well-detailed plan will go a long way to ensure the success of your Grasscutter farming in Nigeria. The first step in having a good business plan is to do a feasibility study. Check out other Grasscutter farmers around you and see how they run their businesses. Look for ways you can make improvements.

Make a list of what is needed to successfully start Grasscutter business in Nigeria. Through the list you made, you can know how much to budget to start off successfully. You will also know how many Grasscutters you need to start with and the types of facilities you need to put in place.

2.     The Grasscutter pen

To prevent the Grasscutters from coming in contact with anything that will cause harm to them, you need to build a pen for them. A pen will serve as a house for them. It protects them from harsh weather, diseases, and threats from predators.

It is best to raise Grasscutters under an intensive housing system because it increases the rate of their growth. The Grasscutter pen should be spacious and give room for adequate ventilation. Grasscutters do not want to sleep where they eat, so it is important to separate where they eat from where they sleep.

When building a pen for your Grasscutters, remember that two male Grasscutters do not live in the same place because they will always fight until one is dead, so you should ensure that one colony contains 1 matured male Grasscutter and 4 to 6 female Grasscutters.

The dimension of the Pen should be big enough to ensure that it is well ventilated and spacious to make the rodents comfortable. An ideal Grasscutter pen should be 45cm in height, 60cm in width and 180cm in length. It should be built in such a way that the temperature remains stable at all times and should have spaces for separate Grasscutters colonies.

During the raining season, it is important to secure the pen from potential pest like ants, termites, snakes, and humans. You can pour engine oils around the pen to ensure that ants do not have access to the pen.

3.     Breeding

The next important step to take in starting Grasscutter farming in Nigeria is to select the right breed for you. You should consider choosing the breed that is most demanded in your region or area. The Thryonomys Swinderianus breed is more in demand in Nigeria than the Thryonomys Gregorianus which is more in demand in the Central and East Africa region.

You must not select the breed randomly if you want a successful Grasscutter farming business in Nigeria.  You can select them by weight with all the females having the same weight. They should not have weight differences of greater than 500g while the male should be about 0.5 to 1kg heavier than the female.

You should select 1 large and healthy male Grasscutter with 4 to 5 female ones to form 1 colony in a cage. When the Grasscutters are healthy, then reproduction can be faster.

You can identify an adult male Grasscutter by his wrinkled and brown genitals while you can identify an adult female Grasscutter by the closeness of the anus to the genital area. The distance between the genitals and anus of a young male Grasscutter is twice the size of the young female one.

4.     The Grasscutter feed

Grasscutters are herbivorous, so they mainly feed on grasses with fairly high crude fiber content. To rear healthy Grasscutters, it is essential to feed them with diets that consist of green forage and should be supplemented by high energy feed. You can also feed them with other nutritional elements like agricultural by-products in addition to other feeds that contain protein and minerals to aid their growth.

Feeding of Grasscutters is easy because the source of most of their food is from the bush because since they are herbivorous animals, they eat mainly grass and roots which you can easily get. You can also look for suppliers that can supply specially processed food for them.

When you feed the male Grasscutters with broiler’s starter or finisher, it makes them grow to marketable size faster. You can also feed them with food crops like rice, groundnut, cassava, yam, and sweet potato.

 

5.     Grasscutter weaning time

Grasscutters reproduce quickly, especially when they are well-fed. They can give birth to 4 to 7 baby Grasscutters twice a year. Therefore, in the case where you have about 100 female Grasscutters, you can be sure to have about 800 to 1,400 new Grasscutters yearly.

The weaning period of a baby Grasscutter is between 4 to 8 weeks. During this period, you are required to take proper care of the female Grasscutters. The baby Grasscutter can still stay with the mother for about 4 months.

After 5 to 7 months, the baby Grasscutter is separated from the mother and put in the same place with a male for mating. The Grascutters can mate for a period of 140 days before it is separated from the male. When there is no sign of pregnancy in the female after 160 days of the separation, the female is returned to the same place with the male for proper matting. You can also use another male for the same purpose.  

How to manage a pregnant Grascutter

You should be expecting pregnancy in the female after mating. Pregnancy in a Grasscutter can be tested using a very simple method. After 5 to 8 weeks of mating, put a cotton bud inside the genitals of the female. You will know that the female Grasscutter is pregnant when the cotton bud turns red. But if there is no change to the cotton bud, it means the female Grasscutter is yet to be pregnant. In the case of no pregnancy, the female is returned to the male again for mating.

The gestation period for Grasscutter is about 5 months. The female delivers after 5 months. During this period, the female Grasscutter needs special care. You should feed the female with quality feed and clean water. This helps in the production of milk. The young ones can then be separated from their mother after 40 days. This is very essential because when the young ones remain with their mother after 40 days, the female may grow weak due to the prolonged feed of the young ones.

Grasscutter farming and management

For effective running of Grasscutter farming in Nigeria, the management of the business is important. Grasscutter farming and management cover the aspect of housing, feeding, hygiene, reproduction, and marketing.

Housing is important because it is used to protect rodents from predators and also for stopping them from escaping. It also helps the farmer facilitate the handling and maintenance of the rodents and helps to ensure that proper hygiene is put in place for both the infrastructure and the livestock.

The cost of materials and the resources available are the major determinants for the choice of a housing system. There are generally two types of housing systems. There are the floor hutches and the cage.

For proper management, you can choose the housing system that suits the pattern you intend to use in rearing the Grasscutters. Any housing system you choose is good provided that there is proper management.

Starting Grasscutter farming may not be so hectic when it is still small. But as it grows, managing it may become more difficult because there is an increment in the workload. At this point, you will need the assistance of others to help you put things in order.

Disease management and control

Grasscutters also face health threats that tend to affect their growth and performance just as it is with other animals. You are expected to maintain proper hygiene at all times to improve the health condition of the Grasscutters and to ensure that they grow as they should.

You must always be observant to notice whenever there is any change in the environment or to the Grasscutters so as to tackle it immediately in case it can cause any harm to them.

You should also increase the immunity of the Grasscutters. This can be done through the administration of vitamins, mineral supplements, and sweetened lemon juice. It should be done at least every two weeks so that they will always be in good health.

Other measures you can take to ensure that they are always in good health include ensuring that they always eat quality food and drink good water.

Grasscutter farming technique

There are strategies or techniques you need to put in your Grasscutter business to be able to get the best result you want. These strategies will help in the easy running of the business as well as preserving the lives of the Grasscutters and ensure that they are healthy and fit.

·         Ensure that your farm is located in a less noisy environment

·         The farm can also be close to your personal house. This can help you monitor the Grasscutters closely and also makes it easy for you to provide adequate security for them.

·         You should also ensure that the farm location is far from bad odour and pollution. It will help to prevent illnesses and keep the Grasscutters healthy.

·         Always make research and ask questions on how best to grow your business.

·         If possible, have a mentor. The mentor should be someone you can easily run to when you encounter any challenge.

·         Ensure that proper hygiene is maintained always. Clean the pen or cage regularly. The feeding and drinking equipment too should be kept clean always.

When you keep the above things in mind, you can be sure to have minimum damages and shortages.

Where to buy Grasscutter in Nigeria

Grasscutters are mainly found in grasslands, muddy territories, and meadows. They are fast and sharp which is why it requires a lot of skills to be able to hunt and capture them. These days, hunters are not popular again, especially in the urban settlement.

Before you start Grasscutter farming in Nigeria, you need to look for reliable and credible Grasscutter suppliers where you can buy them from. Let’s take a look at some farms you can buy Grasscutter from in Nigeria.

Jovana integrated farm

Jovana integrated farm is one of the leading farms where you can buy Grasscutter in Nigeria. They are into rearing of healthy young Grasscutters which can be used for commercial purposes. They have facilities that develop fertile grass-adapted Grasscutters that are capable of performing consistently. They also feed their Grasscutters with natural grass and other less expensive agro-products.

Jovana integrated farm is located at 127 Isolo Road, Mushin, Lagos. They also have branches in Imo and Enugu state.

Obasanjo Farm Nigeria Limited

This farm is owned and managed by the former president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. It is one of the biggest farms in Nigeria. They deal mainly with agricultural machinery, crops, fruits, and livestock. They rear healthy Grasscutters which they sell to people either for personal or commercial purposes.  You can always get a supply of healthy Grasscutters from the farm upon request.

They can be contacted at the farmhouse located in Idiroko Road, Ota, Ogun state.

Ofarms Integrated Ventures

They don’t only sell Grasscutters but they also offer Grasscutter farming training and consultancy. They help new farmers start the business and also offer advices and tips that will make the business successful. They are located in Owan West LGA of Edo state.

Raytech Mechanise Farm

The involvement of this farm is very significant in the agriculture industry. They provide excellent Grasscutters that are suitable for both local and international markets. They are also into the production of Rice, Maize, livestock, and farm animal feed. If you intend to buy Grasscutters in Nigeria, you can visit them at Okposi, Ohaozara in Ebonyi state.

Hyuku Fadama MPcs

They specialize in the rearing of Grasscutters and other livestock. They have good facilities that ensure that the health and safety of their animals are intact. Their knowledge on Grasscutter farming is second to none as they offer training on how to successfully start Grasscutter farming in Nigeria. They are one of the best places to buy Grasscutter in Nigeria. They are located in Wukari, Taraba state.

 

 


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