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Pheasants to the rescue

Update: August, 01/2015 - 12:00

Birds called pheasants are good to farm.

A farmer in central Quang Nam has found they eat less than chickens and have more meat on them.

He is helping other farmers by telling them about pheasant farming.

He hopes pheasant farming will help struggling farmers through hard times.

Tran Van Chuc poses with a pheasant in his farm in central Quang Nam Province's Duy Thu Commune.
Tran Van Chuc poses with a pheasant in his farm in central Quang Nam Province's Duy Thu Commune. - VNS Photo Do Truong

Do Truong

QUANG NAM  (VNS) — Tran Van Chuc, an official at Duy Thu Commune's People's Committee in central Quang Nam, has a love for pheasants and has taught farmers how to make a living raising them.

Chuc graduated from the Hue College of Economics in 2012 with a thesis on raising pheasants. After that he decided he wanted to turn his 200sq.m garden into a pheasant farm. Through the process he found out that anyone with several million dong could start their own business raising pheasants – and since then he's sold birds to local farmers at low prices and coached them on raising the birds to make a living.

Back when his interest in pheasants began, Chuc visited bird farms in Ha Noi to learn more about how to raise them. He then bought four pheasants for VND5 million (US$232).

The birds grew quickly. He fed them a simple diet of rice, corn, bran and industrial food. After four months, the birds weighed between 1.5 and 2.2 kilos. Three months later, three of them began laying eggs.

Chuc set up an incubator and put the eggs inside, and young birds hatched from most of them, to his surprise.

"Pheasants are more resistant to disease, eat less and bring more meat than chickens," he said. "Especially, their waste is not as horrible as chickens, so they can be raised in residential areas."

Now Chuc has 50 pheasants for breeding and many young fowls at his farm. He earns VND15 million ($697) per month.

"What the birds need are 20-centimetre-deep sand, a system for supplying water and food, and warmth from several light bulbs for newborn chicks. The raising process is quite similar to raising chickens," he said.

Moreover, the cost of food for pheasants was only 30 per cent for that used by chickens, he added.

The hardest part was the high cost of purchasing the birds – VND50,000 ($2.30) for a baby bird and VND200,000 ($9.30) per kilo for a big one. That was what first prevented him from developing the model for local farmers.

"They said the price was too high and the birds would be difficult to sell," he said.

Chuc has decided to offer a special promotion to local farmers: buy one baby bird get one free. Now 30 households have purchased his pheasants, and he has shown them how to raise them and start their own business. He has been invited to lecture about the pheasants at some colleges.

"I'm ready to guide the techniques to anyone who are interested in," he said.

Phan Dinh Son, chairman of the communal People's Committee, said raising pheasants has created a new path for farmers who wanted to switch jobs.

In order to focus on his newfound pheasant-based career, Chuc resigned his position at the communal authority. He plans to enlarge his farm to a capacity of 1,000 birds.

"I just want to introduce a new model that helps farmers ease their hardships, reduce risks and earn more money," he said. — VNS

GLOSSARY

Chuc graduated from the Hue College of Economics in 2012 with a thesis on raising pheasants.

A thesis is a project people complete as part of a college or university course.

Through the process he found out that anyone with several million dong could start their own business raising pheasants – and since then he's sold birds to local farmers at low prices and coached them on raising the birds to make a living.

He's, in this case, is short for "he has". It can also be short for "he is".

To coach people to do something means to teach them while working with them.

He fed them a simple diet of rice, corn, bran and industrial food.

A diet is an eating plan.

Chuc set up an incubator and put the eggs inside, and young birds hatched from most of them, to his surprise.

An incubator is a special room that is kept warm so that little birds, called  chicks, can come out of eggs without their mothers sitting on them for a long time.

When birds hatch, they come out of their eggs as little chicks.

"Pheasants are more resistant to disease, eat less and bring more meat than chickens," he said.

If a pheasant is resistant to diseases, it does not catch diseases easily.

 "Especially, their waste is not as horrible as chickens, so they can be raised in residential areas."

Residential areas are areas in which most buildings are people's homes rather than businesses or factories.

The hardest part was the high cost of purchasing the birds – VND50,000 ($2.30) for a baby bird and VND200,000 ($9.30) per kilo for a big one.

Purchasing means buying.

Chuc has decided to offer a special promotion to local farmers: buy one baby bird get one free.

A promotion is a campaign to make something sound attractive.

He plans to enlarge his farm to a capacity of 1,000 birds.

To enlarge a farm means to make it bigger.

If the farm has a capacity of 1,000 birds, that is the highest number of pheasant that can be kept on the farm.

WORKSHEET

State whether the following sentences are true, or false:

1. When Tran Van Chuc started buying pheasants, he found these birds were very cheap to buy.

2. Tran Van Chuc's first pheasants started laying eggs after he had been feeding them for only three months.

3. Tran Van Chuc studied at the Da Nang College of Economics and graduated in 2011.

4. When Tran Van Chuc started buying pheasants, a big bird cost four times more than a small bird.

5. Phan Dinh Son is chairman of the communal People's Committee.

ANSWERS:

© Duncan Guy/Learn the News/ Viet Nam News 2015



























 1. False; 2. True; 3. False; 4. True; 5. True.

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