“Duck rearing doesn’t require elaborate housing, unlike poultry; ducks are hardy, more suitable for the Indian climate and more disease-resistant than chicken”, says Vikas Kumar (27) a youth from rural Karnal in Haryana.
Initially, as it often happens, he struggled hard to obtain significant income from duck farming, due to a variety of reasons. Today he rears 2000 ducks of Indian Runner and Khaki Campbell breeds which are considered good egg-producing breeds. Vikas Kumar says, “Rearing animals were always my hobby and even during my student days I had kept a small ock of hens and ducks.
After studies, I got fully engaged in farming activities and at the same time searching for other opportunities. It was at this juncture, I came across an advertisement of Indian Society of Agribusiness Professionals (ISAP), Karnal, calling for candidates to join the AC&ABC Scheme. I applied for the same, and, after the initial interview and screening, was selected for the training program.
A lecture on local animal husbandry enterprises, where an expert compared poultry and duck farming, fascinated me so much that I decided to take to duck farming. After gathering all the required technical and market details on duck farming, I decided to start a commercial
duck farming enterprise”. With a landholding of only three acres, Mr. Vikas Kumar earlier had a mix of paddy crop and vegetables growing in his land. While paddy was grown in two acres, in one acre he grew different vegetables. After the training programme,
instead of growing vegetables, he started duck farming on the one-acre land. He invested Rs. 2 lakh to erect low-cost pens and a farm pond fenced with iron wire mesh, ensuring availability of ample clean water for ducks to drink and bathe in. “Ducks lay more eggs in winter than during summer months.
Hence, I kept the ock size based on the seasons. To obtain maximum breeding in winter, I kept the drake- to-duck ratio 1:10. Besides, farmers also purchase two- or three-month-old ducklings from my farm and start their own duck rearing unit”, says a beaming Vikas. “I have designed a three-day training module on a package of practices on duck farming, and also provided employment to six youth from my village”, he adds with pride.