Mr. Sunu Mathew a farmer in Kerala is presently realising a net income of Rs. 3,54,000 from his piggery and quail units. Success from his piggery and quail units urged the farmer to start a goatary unit with nine does and nine kids of Tellicherry breed, a rabbitary comprising 15 animals of Chinchilla breed, a poultry with 15 birds mainly for domestic consumption and fodder grass and Azolla for cattle feed.In his six acre land Mr. Mathew has been growing about 220 coconut trees, banana, ginger, nutmeg, cocoa, black pepper, elephant foot yam, tapioca and areca nut as intercrops. The crops have been able to fetch him a gross income of Rs. 1, 27, 000 a year.
He constructed a thatched shed with concrete flooring and compartments, with a capacity to house 30 sows and 250 piglets at a time. Thirty 75 day- old piglets (4 males) of Duroc and White Yorkshire breeds were procured from Government pig farms in Kerala and the unit was started in September 2004. Within 16 months each sow delivered 8-12 piglets.
The piglets were reared up to 60-75 days and then sold at Rs.1,500 each. He was also disposing of male and old pigs for pork. So far he has sold about 25 adults (around 2,500 kg of pork) in 2006. He also sold 200 piglets in 2006, keeping the remaining piglets as parental stock.He spends about Rs.1,000 per month on medicines and veterinary care for his animals and has also engaged a labourer to look after the unit, paying him Rs.6,000 as salary per month.
He started his quail unit in 2006 with about 200 birds (45 day-old chicks). The quails are reared scientifically under the cage system. The quails started egg laying at 60 days of age. At present he is able to collect about 180 eggs per day.
The eggs are sold at the rate of Re.1 per egg, earning him an income of Rs.180 per day He has earned an amount of Rs. 32,400 within six months.
The farmer has become a successful model especially in pig breeding. Many farmers from Karnataka and Kerala visit his farm for piglets and to see his other units.