Cultivation of partridges is in itself an exciting activity, but it also makes a profit. What in this regard are interesting partridges? Breeding and home keeping of this bird is not yet widespread, and there is a demand for it. This means that competition will be low and there will be no problems with sales. This is the first advantage. The following follows from it - the prices for poultry and meat cannot be low, it means that income is provided. The third advantage is low costs and the lack of initial investment, which is very important in the emerging business. And once the costs are low and the incomes are high, then the profit ... That's right - big, but not immediately.
More about the gray partridge
Partridge gray - a resident bird, common in the wild. In Russia, it lives in Altai, the Urals, the Caucasus, in western Siberia, Karelia, the steppe and forest-steppe zones of the center and west of the country.
This is a small bird with a body length of about 30 cm, round shape. The variegated color is visible only up close and helps the bird to be invisible against the background of vegetation and land.
The partridge lives in an open area, in a field or steppe, nests on the ground, in well-protected places. Females cackle, almost like chickens, males utter a call akin to a rooster.
By winter, partridges move closer to people and often spend the night in outbuildings.
Partridges can move fast enough even in dense grass and, if necessary, fly high with noise and shouts.
They live in flocks of several dozen birds, but they disperse in pairs during the mating season and live as a family, raising chicks on equal terms until cold weather.
During the season the partridge lays an average of 25 eggs.
Partridge enemies in nature are birds of prey, animals, harsh winters and, of course, hunters.
These birds are so similar to ordinary chickens that it becomes unclear what problems the breeding and maintenance of partridges at home can cause.
Room for partridges
Partridges do not need a large barn and a purpose-built room. The main thing is that it was dry, warm and without drafts. Since the partridge is a wild bird, it needs an enclosure with a high fence for walks. In the walking zone, tall grass and thorny bushes of blackthorn or wild rose, which in their natural habitat are preferred to protect the partridge, must necessarily grow. Breeding and home keeping of a wild little bird is not that difficult. Tall grass, thorny bushes, warm straw bedding - nothing unusual or expensive.
The partridge is still not a chicken, it flies high enough, so many farmers in a fenced aviary set up cages with a roof. True, many experts agree that in the open area the bird grows better and gains weight. Partridges are spent the night in a shed, the floor of which must be covered with straw or hay, changing litter every other day. Dry grass protects partridges from low temperatures. Therefore, it is necessary to stock up in the summer so that it will last until next summer.
Partridges are afraid of drafts, in the house you need to carefully seal all the cracks. They also do not tolerate loud sounds, so the walls of the barn can be sheathed inside with soundproof material, which at the same time will warm it a little.
Three pairs of partridges can be kept in one cage measuring 35 × 25 × 20 cm. There is enough artificial light in the house, but it must be.
Partridges are not capricious and do not get sick. Therefore, problems with nutrition does not occur. In nature, the bird eats grass, various bugs and their larvae. Partridges, the cultivation and maintenance at home of which is not yet so widespread that special feed has been developed for them, they are happy to eat chicken or turkey feed, any grain or cereals.
They need calcium gluconate in sufficient quantities, so there should always be chalk or crushed shells near the trough. When feeding poultry with roughage to improve digestion, it needs coarse sand. The water in the drinking bowl must be clean and fresh.
Cultivation of partridges at home
Expert advice and farmers begin with the acquisition of several pairs of partridges. But in principle, for the beginning it is enough to have a single sex pair. And the cells need less, and the males do not fight, and the costs are lower. And it is not so offensive if the experiment turns out to be unsuccessful.
There are three ways to acquire birds. The most expensive, but also the easiest way is to buy partridges on a specialized farm. You can also get professional advice, which will require the breeding and maintenance of partridges at home. The cheapest but not always feasible way is to catch wild partridges in the field. The most time-consuming, but requiring special equipment and long enough - to bring the chicks out of the eggs in the incubator.
Growing chicks partridges
Breeding and maintenance in the home of partridges is not as complicated and time-consuming as it seems. Cultivation of young stock will require attention, but it is no different from raising any other poultry.
Partridge laying eggs start at the end of April, this period lasts twenty-six days. All this time, the male must be in the same cage with the female to fertilize the eggs. Males and females are seated in different cells approximately in the middle of summer.
During the season, one partridge produces about sixty eggs, and only fifteen are capable of sitting out in one laying. Excess eggs can either be sold or used in an incubator.
In the first days, the hatching chicks should be with the mother, they should be removed in a separate cage after about a week. For a walk they start to let them out at the age of one month. Fresh air and warm sun, dry land covered with grass are the main conditions for the rapid growth and normal development of partridge chicks.
Breeding and home keeping of young stock does not require special knowledge on its feeding. In the early days, it is fed with mashed yolks of hard-boiled eggs and finely chopped green dandelions and yarrow, growing at this time almost everywhere. Already on the third day you can give white bread crumbs, after five days - boiled meat or ant eggs, twice a day, gradually increasing the amount of food.
Benefits of partridge breeding
So, going back to the beginning, it is now possible to answer the question why breeding partridges at home is beneficial. The ideas of business in rural areas and suburban towns are not so diverse. This is mainly the breeding and sale of domestic animals and birds.
Partridges in this regard have some advantages. In the market today, the meat of this bird is represented in insufficient quantities, and there is a demand for it. All more or less expensive restaurants have dishes from rare species of poultry in the menu and are ready to purchase them from reliable suppliers. And on its own table, this diet, organic meat without additives is a big plus.
Eggs of a partridge have a unique chemical composition, they are rich in vitamins, and in cooking they can completely replace chicken. One requirement - they must be subjected to heat treatment, fry, bake or cook. They are also in demand in cosmetology.
In the content of the birds are unpretentious, do not require special care, they get sick very rarely. Peculiarities of partridge breeding at home are not so complicated and impracticable, even a novice farmer who has a private house and outbuildings can cope with breeding.
True, the complexity is still there, but not with proper breeding, but with the tax inspectorate. Business must be registered in the direction “Poultry Breeding”.
Of course, one should not expect profit from the first year, but for the second year some income can be brought. Besides, word of mouth works, which greatly facilitates the implementation of partridges, their eggs and meat.
Gallery: partridges (25 photos)
Cultivation and maintenance of partridge at home
Gray partridge - small birdIt is about the size of a hazel grouse and weighs about half a kilogram. The males are slightly larger - about six hundred grams and look like a regular chicken. At home, the weight of a bird can be as high as eight to nine hundred grams. The bird is very prolific - a complete laying of not less than twelve eggs, and sometimes reaches twenty-five pieces. Due to this, the partridges are raised not only for the sake of meat, but also for the purpose of collecting and selling useful eggs. The peculiarity of the content of these birds is to create the most free conditions close to nature. And this means that an open-air cage in the form of a small cage will not work.
Where to begin?
Since there are no strong differences between partridges and black grouses, further information will do. for both bird species. If this is your first experience in the cultivation of birds, then you should not immediately burn to a large number of individuals. Ten birds are enough to understand whether there is enough strength and ability to grow and breed them at home. There are several ways to acquire partridges:
- Catch them in the wild. Quite a complicated method, because it requires the necessary skills in hunting and catching birds. Suitable only for those who deftly controlled with snares and other devices for catching partridges.
- The best option is to buy young chicks more experienced breederswho are sure to share tips on the care and cultivation of partridges.
- Acquiring eggs is a more time consuming method, since you also have to purchase an incubator or a female for incubation. Care for the young is more complicated than for more young chicks, but the advantage of this method is fast addicting birds to a new home.
Despite the fact that partridges and black grouses are rather unpretentious about changes in weather conditions in the wild, such as rain or snow, it is still worthwhile to equip them with clean and dry room. It is necessary to exclude drafts in order to preserve the health of individuals. In order for the birds to feel free, you should not place more than three birds per square meter. The grid enclosing the territory should be not iron, but from durable nylon - this will avoid injury with a sharp rise of the bird and hit the barrier.
The height of the enclosure should not be less than two meters, be sure to build a ceiling - it will protect your partridges from the attack of predatory animals and birds. The presence of grass and shrubs in which birds will be able to hide while experiencing fear is welcome. In the cold season you can equip the enclosure with artificial plants. Be sure to install several troughs and drinkers in the form of a trough. The presence of boxes is very important. with small pebbles and tracing paper, on which your birds will sharpen claws.
This is one of the most important factors affecting the growth and health of birds. Since the partridge is a wild bird, it eats not steamed grains, but raw. It is necessary to prepare the main feed from wheat and millet. You can add crushed corn and barley with oats. Be sure to supplement the daily diet with cottage cheese, minced meat, grated juicy carrots and cabbage. In winter, the calorie content of food should be at least eighty calories. In the summer, the daily amount of calories should be about two hundred and fifty.
To saturate the diet with vitamins and mineralsand add fish oil to feed and various mineral supplements, not more than two grams per day. Partridges and black grouses are very fond of eating alfalfa, clover, sugar beet and carrot. Sometimes you can add cranberries and viburnum to the food. To simplify feeding, you can prepare a mixture of grain, which includes:
- 30% wheat,
- 20% corn,
- 25% barley,
- 10% of millet,
- 10% sorghum.
The daily amount of food eaten is not less than thirty and not more than fifty grams of grain mixture. Fed partridges in the morning and after lunch.
Cultivation of partridges and black grouses
Breeding grouse at home is absolutely identical to breeding partridges. In March or April, partridges and grouse begin to pick up a mate for themselves. Since these birds are monogamous, each male mates with only one female. For the period of breeding chicks, it is better to acquire several small enclosures for each pair. Or provide comfortable corners in the common aviary to eliminate conflicts between males. Nests for such couples can be arranged quite simply. You will need small boxes made of wood or plastic, wicker baskets that need to be filled from the inside with dry straw and grass.
With the onset of May, the partridge female begins laying eggs of a greenish-brown color. The testicles are small, up to 3 cm long and up to 2.5 cm wide. One clutch usually consists of twenty eggs. Deviation to the larger and smaller sides are considered the norm. For the entire season, one partridge can produce sixty eggs. The female is mainly engaged in hatching, but at any moment the male can easily replace it. In normal times, he protects the female from danger and is always nearby. Duration of incubation is about three weeks.
Baby chicks hatch all in one day and very quickly try to leave their former habitat, sometimes without even having time to dry properly. They are born, covered with very soft fluff. On the head and neck, it is brown with pale yellow areas on the sides of the head. Fluff on the back is light brown with dark stripes. Since young individuals are very sensitive to the environment, it is better for them to maintain a temperature of at least thirty degrees for at least the first few days.
Feeding two to three days old chicks is performed up to eight times a day with a wiped boiled testicle. And since they still do not quite understand how to properly eat, you can pour boiled egg crumbs right on their backs - so even with the occasional pecking of each other, they will begin to understand how to get food. From the second week in life, one can gradually enlarge the size of boiled egg crumbs, which are given five times a day. The crumb of bread is added, which is previously soaked in milk with oatmeal. This mixture is given three times a day.
From the tenth day of life, you can safely add to the diet cottage cheese, yogurt, small rusks and millet porridge. Two weeks after hatching, the chicks can calmly graze on the grass. By the age of two months, the number of meals reduced to three times.
How to cook partridge meat
There is an enormous amount of different recipes for sentencing partridge meat. Let us dwell in more detail on the most common and reveal the secrets of how to get meat tender and tasty. In different countries in their own way prepare the meat of this bird. For example, the Germans always extinguish it with vegetables, the French use only broth or let the carcass on the pate, in America they cook the bird or cook it on the grill.
They usually begin with plucking and cutting of the carcass. Because of the small size, it is customary not to remove the head, only the eyes are removed and the goiter is mandatory, the claws are cut, the insides are removed. After these simple machinations, the bird is ready for further preparation.
- The most common way to cook partridge meat is to bake it in the oven. For the most fragrant and delicate meat, be sure to pickle it. To do this, fry quickly on a large fire carcasses in a mixture of vegetable and butter in equal proportions. Add thyme, shallots and some chicken broth. Extinguish the carcass for an hour and remove them. In the remaining sauce, add a couple of tablespoons of currant juice or jelly, as well as 50 grams of beet juice. Boil three minutes and remove from heat. Thoroughly grate the partridges' carcasses of the marinade and wrap in a thin layer of bacon. Prepared poultry can be baked.
- There is also a less laborious recipe called hunting. In this case, the carcass is wrapped in a yeast-free dough and sent to the pan in the oven. To avoid overdrying, you can put a container with water in the oven.
- In the modern world, where there is always not enough time, the recipe for cooking a partridge in a slow cooker will do. Prepare a few carcasses, lightly boil them and rub with pepper. A small amount of vegetable oil is poured into the slow cooker, the carcasses, coarsely chopped garlic and onion are laid. All this is poured with a mixture of honey and soy sauce and is filled with water. Quenching time is at least 60 minutes.
Since the grouse is a wild bird, which today can’t even be considered close to domesticated, it deals with incubation of eggs only from March to July. В природных условиях кладка куропаток не превышает 15 яиц, но в неволе куропатка может дать около 60 яиц, которые можно превратить в цыплят с помощью инкубатора. Правда, чтобы птица дала столько яиц, ей нужно сбалансированное питание и световой день не меньше 15 часов (то есть придется искусственно его продлевать с помощью ламп дневного света).
Those chicks who hatched from eggs hatched by the partridge itself can be left with their mother for several days. But then they still need to be transplanted into a separate cell. In the future, until their maturation, the young should be kept separately from adult birds.
On the cultivation of partridges at home can be found in more detail in specialized books and magazines.