Thursday, August 20, 2015

HOW TO REAR GRASS-CUTTER (CANE RAT) IN ANY PART OF THE WORLD

GRASS-CUTTER (CANE RAT) FARMING AND MANAGEMENT MANUAL


WRITTEN BY:
 MR. NERUS N.ONWULI
greatnerus@gmail.com
 +234(0)8078907118




INTRODUCTION

In the economy of ours, there is great need for self employment and entrepreneurship in other to keep body and soul together. Agricultureis one of the great venture that has made these key elements a possibility and as well a reality.

In agriculture
animal farming is now paving way for so many opportunities to flow into the economy, with so much delight in my heart i bring to you one of the most lucrative agricultural business currently gaining a good group in west Africa and beyond.
"Grass-cutter
(cane rat)  farming" you must have heard about it before and if you
have not you are lucky to be reading this material now.
The grasscutter (Cane-rat) is a hystricomorphic rodent endemic to Africa. The animal occurs in savannah grasslands, forest clearings, cultivated lands and secondary forests, where it is very common and is heavily hunted as a food resource in many areas on the continent. Grasscutters are herbivorous, their favorite’s food being savannah grasses. In captivity; they will also take sugar cane, corn stalks and cassava peelings. The animal is a wasteful feeder, cutting the grass at a characteristic angle with its very powerful incisors to eat the more nutritious, succulent inter-nodes, leaving behind scattered pieces of stem on the feeding grounds. This characteristic feeding behavior is exploited by hunters who look for the feeding sites, an indication of where the animals were active the previous night and concentrate hunting efforts in such areas.
Grasscutter which can also be refer to as giant cane rats are domesticated for their enormous health and increasing wealth benefits.

 Its true grasscutter has been existing for a longtime ago, but as a result of the endless scientific research that is been carried out on a daily basis, shows that it is now possible to keep grasscutter as a home animal and not just killing them or burning the entire ecosystem by hunters and bushmen, you can easily turn your backyard into a barnyard with grass-cutter or you can get a land or stop fallowing your land due to lack of money and make it value to increase by farming grass-cutter on the land
.

Grass-cutter is a meat delicacy in Africa and as such it is widely consumed making it one of the 10 most demanding meat in the market. A market ready Grass-cutter is sold between N4,000 to N10,000 per one.

Five hundred Grass-cutters in a year could earn you between N2 Million to N2.75 Million. Another benefits in grass-cutter is that they are very prolific, they grow fast
a single grass-cutter can be bigger than a small goat, the female grass-cutter gestation period lasts for 150 to 155days or 5months so they can reproduce twice in a year and a mother grass-cutter can give birth to 7 to 10 grass-cutters. It grows big and very fast too.

Grass-cutter
(cane rat)  is one of the biggest rodents in Africa. A fully mature female or male that is ready for market weighs between 3.5kg for the
female and 4.5kg for the male. While measuring 45cm to 60cm in body length.

The standing height is between 25 to 30cm. The body size of a fully grown male is about the size of a nine inches block. One of the reason why the business is booming for the early adopter is because the public already know how much grass-cutter meat can add value to their hath and since the business is still a green-horn, most people buy it from hunters, making it very expensive and the same applies to grass-cutter(cane rat)  farmers because unlike poultry grass-cutter(cane rat)  is not found
everywhere.

GETTING STARTED AS A NEW FARMER

Firstly, you have to know that grass-cutter (cane rat) lives in colony; you don't separate or keep them in cages alone you will keep them inthree or four numbers. You can keep 3 males together and 4 females together, they must be in a family form.

COLONY: 
Grass-cutter(cane rat)  lives in colony, two mature male doesn't live together. Therefore, start with a male and few females together. A colony should consist of one male and three to four females. Your capacity determines how many colony you wants to start with. A small farmer may start with one or two colony, with the arrangement of one male and 3 female in each colony. 

BREEDING PROCESS:

Grass-cutter(cane rat)  is kept 100% for meat; it has to grow well and healthy in other to be profitable. To achieve this, a new farmer must lay emphasis on the choice of breeding stock.
Each colony must have a very health male.The male is the engine of reproduction; a healthy male makes a healthy stock. While selecting the male, pay attention on the well being, good weight gain in male animals is a very important factor that determines how healthy it is.

You have to be watchful when breeding them you need to make sure the animals used for breeding (both male and female) are perfectly healthy with good quality genetic properties.

HOUSING:
It’s important you know that grass-cutter(cane rat)  don't sleep where they eat so if you are keeping them in cage, it has to be large enough and can contain both dinning and sleeping space, it has to be distance away from each other. They can be breed either in a properly build cages or in a house specially designed forthem. Grass-cutter(cane rat)  is sensitive to good habitat, for a colony (1 male and 3 female) the dimension of the cage should be 180cm in length, 60cm in width and 45cm in height. Build your cage that way, separate for each colony. It’s important for their house to be protected from sunlight and humidity the atmosphere must be normal with shed.

The greatest enemy of grass-cutter
(cane rat)  is snake and soldier ants, so it’s important you make their house located in a place where they are protected against attacks of the predators, cases of soldier ant is usually rampant during rainy season so you must watch out and surround their house floor (the soil or concentrate around the cage) with black oil.
Provide their cage with some bedding like grasses to make them feel comfortable always.  

FEEDING:

Grass-cutter (cane rat)  is a herbivorous animals meaning their source of food is basically from the bush,that's why they are more comfortable in the bush where their foods could easily be found (just like their name grass-cutter (cane rat) ) . Their major food is Elephant grass. They also love Sugar cane and most farmers use sugar Cane mainly for their feeding, Guinea grassGamba grassCongo grass.

According to experience, Hygiene and good feeding are the most
important factors for successful, profitably Grass-cutter 
(cane rat)  farming. You
can also fatten the male with concentrate feeds like broiler’s finisher or broiler starter’s feed to help attain market weight within short period of time.

The animal also like Gliricidia septum, herbaceous legumes like root and pitch
of oil and coconut palms, bark of the anacardium and fruits such as half ripen pawpaw, plantain, pineapple, mangoetc are their delight. Food crops such as groundnut, rice, maize, grain legume, tubers like cassava, sweet potato etc also make part of their feeds.

The grass-cutter 
(cane rat)  feed on palm wine and that iswhy they destroy oil palm plantation. They take their water mostly from the field and go to the river during the dry season only. But when domesticated, you can give them water by adding some attractant to it. Cane rate it should be noted does not dig a hole and cannot climb a tree either, so they are less trouble and easy to handle.

They can also be fed with formulated concentrates like pellet as well
as other processing by-products like wheat bran, corn bran, groundnut, soya, oilseed, cotton seed cakes, brewer yeast, grain legume pods, brewers’ grains, maize shucks and cobs, brewer’s yeast etc as feed supplements which will make their growth to be faster.    Grass-cutter (cane rat) don't like cold environment.  The rooms or cages where you keep them must neither be too cold nor too hot. Environment that is suitable for human is considered suitable for Grass-cutters.
GROWING TIME
With good, adequate feeding, the grass-cutter(cane rat)  babies can grow between four to eight weeks. But as a family, they can be with the mother for four months. The kids can be separated from the mother between five to seven months and place with a male to mate with them. The weaned animals can be mated at the age of between seven to eight months from birth.
Indefinite mating is expected to have taken place when the weaned male grass-cutter (cane rat)  is seven months old and the female is eight months. The indefinite mating period is 140 days. But if after 160 days of separation from the male, there is still no sign of pregnancy, and then it should be taken back to the male for proper mating.

Usually there should also be an extra male that can serve the
same purpose.
Grass-cutters(cane rat)  are simple animals and with a healthy environment and proper feeding can make the breeding favourable they have high resistance to diseases outbreak and in any case of abnormality consult the vet doctor.

THE MARKET

Grass-cutter is very marketable and they can be liken to be a hot-cake so many people industries, hotels and commercial restaurants demand for it at a very high rate as they use grasscutter to make deliciousand expensive delicacy.  Most people in the city couldn't buy the meat because it's very scarce, so no amount of Grasscutter you produced that can't be sold within days. It will take combined efforts of thousands of farmers to fill the need of bush meat in the market in
west Africa right now.
Grasscutter is a fast reproducing animal and starts mating with 7 months after birth. It gives birth twice yearly and produces 4-7 at a time. That means, if you have 100 females that gives birth twice in a year, you would be having 900 to 1,500 in your farm within just a year! Such number will bring you nothing less than N5 Million when they are matured for marketing.

PROFIT ANALYSISOF GRASSCUTTER BUSINESS

Initial Start-up in (Naira) =N=

1 family = 5 grasscutters (1male & 4 females) @   =N=70,000 each

 Starting with 5 families = 25 grasscutters @ =N= 350,000

Cage / Housing =   =N= 75,000 for 5 families

Food supplements (soya bean, crush animal bone, PKC ) =  =N= 30,000 / year

TOTAL =  =N= 455,000


Expected Income in (Naira )  = N=

1 female gives birth to an average of 4 animals within 6 months

4 females will give you an average of 16 grasscutters within 6months

16 grasscutters  x 5 families = 80 grasscutters within 6 months

In 1 year, you will be expecting about 160 grasscutters.

The grasscutters weigh between 6- 10kg at maturity

Let’s assume you sell each for =N= 6,000
6000 x 160=    =N=960, 000.

FACTS TO CONSIDER

1. You spent =N= 70,000 to buy your parent stock (breeding stock) @ =N= 14,000 per grasscutter, why should you sell for less? I mean the breeding stock.

2. In the 2nd year you will not be concerned with housing and buying breeding stock, that means much more profit for you.

3. Grasscutters rarely get sick. The cost of treatment is negligible. For example when they have dysentery (running stomach) you administer chalk coal.

4.  Pls note that grasscutter as a delicacy is for the rich and it is in very high demand at restaurants, fast food outlets, hotels, and pepper soup joints and would be grasscutter farmers like you.

5. Breeding stock is more expensive than the fully grown animal.

6. Mortality rate in grasscutter is very low

7. Risk level is very low

8. Grasscutters have been known to litter (give birth) 11 offspring in some cases so using 3 offspring in the estimate above is just to be very very  conservative. You will certainly see much more than 4 grasscutters in some cases.
9. Grasscutter business is an inheritable business that if properly managed; it may out-live the owner and pass on to the next generation.
10.The cost of feeding is very low compared to that of poultry, piggery or fish farming.

Grasscutter farming is one the cheapest form of animal production available. This is because 95% of their food is grass and cassava. This food type does not undergo any form of processing. They are administered in their raw state. An average grasscutter weighing between 6-10 kg could cost between =N= 7,000 – =N=15,000.
AS A GRASSCUTTER FARMER YOU STAND TO GAIN FROM:
1. Supply of grasscutter meat to hotels, restaurants, individuals, fast food etc.
2. Supply of breeding stock to intending farmers
3. Advisory and General Consultancy
4. Training
5. Export
6. Grasscutter feed production
7. Excursion visit by students etc.
There are many decent ways to make good money farming small garden plots , backyard or any available corner in your house and a lots of people are using these spaces to earn part-time or full-time income. Rearing Grasscutter in this type of space is one of the best way to earn cool money.
Grasscutter (a rodent family), like many rodent species has been and will continue to be a delicacy in a number of countries, in Latin America, Africa and Asia where markets exist for a wide variety of rodent species for consumption. Grasscutters are often preferred over other sources of meat because of its unique taste and health benefits. It has no fat, or cholesterol. It is white meat and it is sometimes referred to as lean meat. The meat is of a higher protein content than any other domesticated farm animal and it is also appreciated for its tenderness.  This special delicacy is expensive to buy in the bush meat markets, roadside or anywhere they are sold.
Intensive production of grasscutter has been undertaken in many African countries, including Nigeria.  Small-scale farmers, investors, businessmen and all those with wealth-mind set can now take advantage of the economic incentive for raising grasscutter in captivity / domestication.

At NERUS FARM TECH, we tutor you step by step on how to invest and own your own grasscutter farm at a spot. Attend one of our sections today and learn how to earn extra money to augment your income from your backyard or from that little space around your home.
One of the major reasons and justification for grasscutter farming is to create employment for both skilled and unskilled individuals, thereby helping to reduce the current high level of unemployment, hunger and poverty in our society.
Grasscutter farming is recommended for all including; farmers, Job seekers, Investors, entrepreneurs, military men and officers, Retirees, CEOs, government officials, NGOs, Businessmen and all result oriented people.
NERUS FARM TECH delivers complete technology on intensive and extensive systems based on agro farming to meet your budgets, even if you don’t have substantial capital we know how you can improvise.
If you desire to invest in grasscutter breeding and production, NERUS FARMTECH is ready and experienced to train, guide and mentor you wisely from site survey, location of project set-up, feasibility report and modern grasscutter farm construction.

We are disposed to render on the spot services you may require with respect to grasscutter breeding and production in any part of Nigeria and African as a whole.

Contact Us at:
NERUS FARM TECH
24, Beside ECWA II,
SCC Road, Bwari Abuja.
+234(0) 8078907118
+234(0) 7066855843







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