The National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) at the weekend, said in six months, 1,428,000 rabbits will produce 2,142,000 litres of urine fertiliser which will serve as organic fertiliser to support NALDA young farmer’s rabbit rearing program.
It said the rabbit rearing program which was kicked off about 3 months ago by President Muhammadu Buhari had Imo, Abia, Oyo and Cross River as pilot states.
The Executive Secretary NALDA, Prince Paul Ikonne, made the disclosure in Owerri, Imo Imo State, during the unveiling of Rabbit Waste Organic Fertiliser harvested from rabbits in four pilot states in the country.
He said the program is designed to engage 17,000 young Nigerians in rabbit rearing, but as a result of learning points from the first pilot phase, NALDA has generated a deep insight into the dynamics of rabbit farming.
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According to Ikonne, result analysis from the laboratory, had revealed that rabbit urine contains Nitrogen: 13.3 g/l; Chloride (Cl-): 5.87 g/l; Sodium (Na+): 3.17 g/l; Potassium (k+): 1.750 g/l; Inorganic sulfur (S): 0.163 g/l; Phosphate (P): 0.95 g/l; pH: 5:6.
“It is on this backdrop that the program will be extended to other states and also increase the number of participants in the existing states,” he added.
Already, he said 25,000 litres of urine have been harvested from over 5000 rabbits which would in turn be used as organic fertiliser for its farms.
“As of today, NALDA has been able to harvest over 25,000 litres of urine from over 5,000 rabbit which is to serve as organic fertiliser to support NALDA young farmer’s in their various farms at zero cost,” he said.
Also, he said the agency is expecting to get 136,0000 rabbits from the 17000 shared among its farmers in a year, while the programme will be extended to five states.
He further explained that:”with a total of five rabbits given to farmers on five per farmers bases, in three months, 85000 will be distributed, while 10 rabbits kits per rabbits per gestation period and 20 rabbits are expected to be recovered from each farmer within the same period amounting to 340,000 rabbits in three months, 680,000 in six months and 1,360,000 in a year.
“357,000 rabbits will produce 535,500 litres of urine fertiliser in three months, while in six months period 714,000 rabbits will produce 1,071,000 litres of urine fertiliser and 1,428,000 rabbits will produce 2,142,000 litres of urine fertiliser which will serve as organic fertiliser to support NALDA young farmer’s in their various farms at zero cost.”
He added that the rabbits were subsequently distributed to those who indicated an interest in the project to among other things harvest urine from these animals which have been found to be a rich source of organic fertilizer for rice and maize farming.