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A farmer in Chitradurga adopts a new style of sheep-rearing that cuts costs
Improvising: Farmer C. Mahalingappa feeding his sheep at his farm in Hiriyur taluk, Chitradurga district.
Chitradurga: C. Mahalingappa, a progressive farmer from Gollarahatti village in Hiriyur taluk, has adopted a novel method of sheep-rearing, which appears to be profitable.
Mr. Mahalingappa has started using the ‘stall-feeding method’. “This method is economical and cost-effective compared to grazing,” he says.
In the stall-feeding method, sheep are reared inside a shed where they are given special fodder. “The fodder, which is given to them twice a day, is made up of maize and nutritional powder. As the sheep are taken care of inside the shed, they need not be taken out for grazing,” he says.
The method helps save on labour charges since at least one person is required to graze 50 sheep. Only two persons are needed to feed sheep kept in stalls.
“By grazing, the risk of sheep contracting disease or infections is high. Polluted water is another reason for disease in sheep. These risks can be avoided by feeding them in their shed,” he says.
Mr. Mahalingappa, who began with only 30 sheep and an initial investment of Rs. 60,000, now has around 400 sheep. Each fetches nearly Rs. 5,000 in the market, and it costs only around Rs. 2,000 to care for them for three months, he says.
Mr. Mahalingappa has been raising Dakhani and Rambouillet breeds of sheep. While the Dakhani is a domestic breed that is sold, Rambouillet rams, an Australian breed, are used for breeding.
Mr. Mahalingappa learned about the new method in Chintamani taluk in Chickaballapur district. He says it is profitable especially now that grazing land is becoming scarce.
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