Beltsville Small White turkey farming is pretty popular, especially in it’s native area. It is a meat breed, and raised mainly for meat production purpose. It is a relatively smaller sized turkey breed which is ideal for small or hobby farmers.
The Beltsville Small White turkey breed was originated from the United Sates. It was actually developed during the beginning in 1934. The breed was developed in response to market research that said consumers wanted a turkey of small to medium size with no dark pinfeathers.
The Beltsville Small White turkey breed was named after both of it’s physical characteristics and origin place. It’s place of origin is the USDA’s Beltsville Agricultural Research Center in Maryland, and it is a relatively smaller sized bird with entirely white plumage.
The USDA used Bronze, Narragansett, White Austrian, White Holland and wild turkey genetics in a breeding program at Beltsville Center for creating the Beltsville Small White turkey. And the breeding program lasted from 1934 to 1941. The main aim of the breeding program was to develop a bird that was meaty, well-finished and free from dark pin feathers.
The Beltsville Small White turkey breed was raised commercially during the 1940s. And the breed was officially recognized by the American Poultry Association in 1951. The breed was nearly disappeared by the 1970s (and the Broad Breasted White turkeys had come into prominence).
Today, the Beltsville Small White turkey is a pretty rare breed. And it is listed as ‘critical’ by The Livestock Conservancy. However, commercial Beltsville Small White turkey farming can help this breed to recover it’s population. And at the same time you can make good profit from commercial Beltsville Small White turkey farming business.
How to Start Beltsville Small White Turkey Farming
The Beltsville Small White turkeys are just like many other domestic turkey breeds. But they are relatively smaller in size and raised mainly for meat production. They are extremely strong and hardy birds, and raising them is relatively easy. Here we are trying to describe more information about starting and operating a successful Beltsville Small White turkey farming business from purchasing birds to caring and marketing.
First of all, you have to purchase very good quality, healthy and active birds for starting your Beltsville Small White turkey farming business. Purchasing good quality birds is very important, because good quality birds ensure good production and maximum profits.
You can purchase either mature birds or day old poults, depending on the availability in your area. The mature birds are generally sold at very high prices in the market, but the day old poults are much cheaper. So, we recommend starting with day old poults.
You can purchase the poults from any of your nearest turkey breeding centers, turkey poult suppliers or any existing Beltsville Small White turkey farms. You can also consider searching your local online classified websites. Just ensure that the poults are strong, healthy, active and diseases free.
Making a very good, secure and comfortable housing system for your turkey birds is very important. Because a good housing system not only helps the birds to stay healthy, but also helps them to stay free from all types of wild predators and adverse weather conditions.
Like many other domestic turkey breeds, the Beltsville Small White turkeys also require a comfortable and clean housing environment. You have to ensure all required facilities for your birds inside the house. Provide them with a good roosting area with a roof. And ensure that the roosting area has good protection against predators.
The Beltsville Small White turkeys are good for raising in free range system. So, allowing them to access to fresh pasture will be good. They also require a place to dust bathe and a roosting place for flying up into at night. The Beltsville Small White turkeys are small to medium sized birds. And each mature bird will require around or upto 8-10 square feet of housing space.
Feeding the birds with very good quality, healthy and nutritious food is the most important part of Beltsville Small White turkey farming business. Because good food not only helps the birds to stay healthy, but also helps them to grow better and produce more.
You can feed your birds either with commercial poultry feeds, or turkey feeds depending on the availability in your area. The turkey birds require more protein in their diet than chickens. So ensure adequate amount of protein in their food.
Generally, the food of the poults should contain at least 28% protein and the adult bird’s food should contain at least 20% protein. You can also use gamebird starter or chick starter feeds for feeding your poults for the first 6 weeks, and then switch to a grower feed.
Never feed your turkeys with contaminated feeds or polluted water. And always try to provide them with enough clean and fresh drinking water as per their demand.
The Beltsville Small White turkeys are good for raising in both confinement and free range system. But raising them in free range system will help you to reduce feeding costs. And at the same time, the free range turkeys will produce better quality products.
Like many other domestic turkey breeds, the Beltsville Small White turkeys are also naturally very good breeders. They will breed easily and produce fertile eggs for hatching if you keep good ratio of toms and hens in your flock. Generally one mature and healthy tom is enough for breeding around or up to 8-10 hens.
The Beltsville Small White turkeys are very strong, active and hardy birds. They generally require less caring and other management. Although taking additional caring will help the birds to grow better and produce more.
Monitor their health on a regular basis for any signs of diseases or illness. And take necessary steps as soon as possible if you notice anything uncommon. Vaccinate your birds timely, and always try to keep good contact with a vet in your area.
Marketing turkey products is not a problem. The Beltsville Small White turkey is raised mainly for meat production. And turkey meat has very good market demand and value. So, you will probably be able to easily sell your products in the local market. Although, you should set your marketing strategies before starting this business.
These are the common steps and ways for Beltsville Small White turkey farming business. Beltsville Small White turkey farming is very easy, and the beginners can also raise them. Hope this guide has helped you! Good luck & may God bless you!