Snail farming in Nigeria is one of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria that you can start with low capital. Snail farming is an animal rearing business that is well neglected in Nigeria, as most people tend to venture into fish farming,poultry….etc. Yet snail farming affords you the opportunity to make money within a short period on time. Why are Nigerians not fully engaged in this money making agribusiness of snail rearing? The answer is simple. IGNORANCE!
Benefits of Snail Farming in Nigeria
The benefits of snail farming in Nigeria are listed below:
- Snails are hermaphrodites which implies that snails have both male and female reproductive organs. As a result,snails are highly reproductive .
- Snails can reproduce very fast. One snail can lay eggs 6 times in a year. Each time they lay more than 80 to 100 eggs.
- Snail is better than any other red meat. And it is enriched with highly nutritious ingredients like iron, protein, calcium and phosphorus.
- Snail’s meat is highly recommended by dietitians and doctors because it contains very low amount of cholesterol, sodium and fat.
- Snail’s meat is very delicious and has a great market all over the Nigeria and in the West African regions..
- Domestic snail farming in Nigeria can meet up the family nutrition demands.
- Commercial snail production can decrease the importation of frozen meat or fish from the foreign country. This can save money and make the economy of Nigeria strong.
- Establishing a snail farm in Nigeria by using modern technologies, require less capital investment and produce much within a very short period. Running costs is also very low.
- Risk of losses are less compared to other types of livestock farming system.
- Every parts of snail’s body is usable.
- You can make ten times more profit from snail farming in Nigeria within a year without any risk.
- Snail farming is not time consuming and there are no stress, odour, noise and irritation.
- You can easily do snail farming business with your current occupation.
Steps for Starting Snail Farming in Nigeria
For starting snail farming in Nigeria, you have to go through some step-by-step process. Below is a step by step process for starting commercial snail farming business in Nigeria.
Suitable Environment for Snail Farming in Nigeria
Generally snails are easily dehydrated. Dryness occurs in snails due to moisture loose in snail. Wind increases the rate of moisture loose in snails. So, select a suitable location for establishing your snail farm. For preventing the snails from losing water from their body quickly, you have to place the snail house (snaileries) in wind protected environment. An area with many trees can make perfect environment for snail farming in Nigeria.
Suitable Soil for Snail Farm
Soil is the main habitat of snail. For successful snail farming in Nigeria, the selected land for this business must have to contain some of the components and chemical substances which are necessary for surviving the snails. For this reason, all types of soil are not suitable for commercial snail farming. The shell of the snail is mainly calcium and they derive most of the calcium from the soil. They drink water from the soil and also lay eggs on the soil. For successful farming you must have to select such suitable place with availability of all types of necessary facilities for the snails. The selected soil must contain all the above elements. But be very careful. Keep proper balance. Never let the soil become waterlogged, too dry so the soil will not be acidic. Always avoid the clayey and acidic soil. Sandy-loamy soil with low water holding capacity is perfect for snail farming in Nigeria.
To start a successful snail farm, you need to buy some fresh quality snails from the market or any farm. But some snail farming expert say that getting some snails directly from the forest instead of purchasing from market makes good result in production. Because, the collected snails from forest can easily adopt themselves with the new environment than the farm snails. If you are not able to collect some snails from forest, you can collect some snail from the bush through a very simple technique.
During rainy season clear a little portion of land and sprinkle spicy fruits there like banana, pawpaw, plantain or pineapple. Suppose you have done this process at 5 pm in the evening. Then go back there after 2 or 3 hours. Collect all the snails gathered in the place. Repeat the process until you get sufficient amount of snails for your farm. There is an another way of getting some fresh snails. Try to get some snail’s eggs littered in the market where it is sold. While collecting, check the fertility of the eggs. Because some eggs lost fertility because of the exposure to sunlight. Then put the eggs inside a container having wet sand and covered with cocoyam leaf. Within 21-28 days those eggs would hatch into baby snails. Start feeding the baby snails and your snail farm is successfully set for you.
Build a Small Snail House
Snailery(Snail house) is very essential for snail farming in Nigeria. A good snailery keeps the snails safe and productive. snaileries can vary depending on your breeding scale, from a patch of fence-protected ground, sheltered from the wind to a covered box. Make a concrete pen with soil deep of about 10 inches or dig a trench, and cover it with screen or wire all around to prevent the snails from escaping for larger and commercial production. Generally snails love to stay on cold and dark place. But keep the snails free from harmful humidity level. For regulating the temperature, fresh leaves and cloth that is regularly wet can be used. Prevent entrance of harmful animals like snakes, rats and some other harmful predators. Wire is a great solution for keeping those animals away. You also have to prevent some harmful smaller ones like termites and ants.
Snails generally eat fruits, green leaves etc. Snails feed on leaves like cassava leaves, cabbage, cocoyam, eggplant leaves, lettuce leaves, okra leaves or pawpaw leaves. Among the fruits you can feed them banana, cucumber, eggplant, mango, oil palm fruits, pears, pawpaw, tomatoes etc.
After following the processes outlined above, your snails will start growing very fast.Then as the snails continue to grow, separate the big ones from the small ones. Generally, within a year most of the snails reach marketing size. Some snails take more time to grow. However, snail has a good market demand and price. You can easily sell the snails in your local market. Snail meat consuming rate is growing very fast throughout the globe. So, exporting in international market can make more money.
Snail farming in Nigeria is absolutely a lucrative business idea. The initial investment is low, required space or labor is low and you can do this business along with your current profession. The beginners have to visit some snail farm practically and read a lots of book written about snail farming in Nigeria.