In snail farming business, the term ”Formulated feeds” can simply be defined as the combination or mixture of two or more feed ngredients (maize, groundnut cake, fish meal, soy bean meal, oyster shell, and bone meal) at different proportions to meet the particular need (growth, maintenance, reproduction) of a specific animal using locally available feed resources at lowest possible cost.
Snail is a very good source of protein, calcium, and iron and it’s very low in cholesterol when compared to other protein sources. They are also very environmental friendly.
Snail farming is a very lucrative and easy business. The demand for snail all around the world is growing exponentially. It is therefore a product of international value, it is not capital intensive and also not time consuming, and it can also be done alongside other businesses.
Heliculture: – The science, practice and occupation of growing snails for food, it’s making them feel as if they are in their natural habitat. Snails are hermaphrodite – they possess both male and female reproductive organs; this makes it difficult to differentiate between the male and the female gender. Snail is rich in protein and irons, low in fat, and contains almost all the amino acids needed by human.
Snails are nocturnal animals (very active at night), and they have high sense of smell. They are drawn to the sweet smell of foods in the surroundings. For those in areas where there is no bush, the best way is purchasing your stock.
Whichever method you may adopt, make sure you have different species to fast-track the breeding rate, the growth of your business, and to meet consumers demand. The species underlisted are lucrative in West Africa.
Achatina Fulica (The East African land Snail) – known commonly as the giant African snail or giant African land snail.
Achatina Achatina (Giant Ghana Snail or Tiger Land Snail) – common name the giant Ghana snail, also known as the giant tiger land snail, is a specie of very large, air-breathing land snail.
Archachatina Marginata (Giant West African Snail) – the giant West African snail, is a specie of air-breathing tropical land snail. They can grow up to 20cm long, and live up to 10 years.
Benefits of Using Formulated Feed (Advantages)
- It improves performance of the snail.
- It can be used to meet the specific requirement of the animal.
- It can be easily measured.
- It saves time and energy.
- It is good for commercial production of snail.
- It can be stored for longer period.
Demerits / Disadvantages
- Knowledge of simple arithmetic is required.
- It is expensive.
- Milling machine is required.
Requirements for Snail Feed Formulation
- Nutrients requirement of the animal must be known.
- Cost of the necessary ingredients must be known.
- Nutrients composition of the feed ingredients is essential.
- Availability of the feed ingredients.
- Little knowledge of arithmetic is required.
- The state (health, stages of reproduction) of the animal must be known.
- Use of computer.
The Different Methods of Formulating Snail Feed
- Pearsion square method.
- Trial and error method.
- Use of computer.
- Simple Pearsion method.
- Formulate a feed of 24% protein using groundnut cake and maize.
% protein of maize =10%
% protein of G.N.C =42%
Nutrient requirement =24%
Maize ►10 ∕52 x 24= 4.62%
G.N.C► 42 ∕52 x 24=19.38%
Maize– 4.62∕24 x 100 =19.25
G.N.C- – 19.38∕24 x 100=80.75
i.e.19.25% of maize and 80.75% of G. N.C are required to formulate a diet of 24% protein.
Precautions to be taken when Formulating Snail Feeds
• Avoid using adulterated, mouldy or infested ingredients
• The ingredients must be properly dried.
• Be sure that the ingredients are weighed correctly.
• The feed must be ground to finest particle size
• The attendants or the manager must be present at the feed mill.
• The finish feed must be stored in well ventilated dry place.
Nutrient Requirements for Different Stages of Snail
|Adult Stage||24-26||2200- 2400||5.5||0.6|
Chemical Composition of Some Snail Feed Ingredients
|RawMaterials||Dry Matter (DM) %||Crude Protein %||Energy ME K Cal/kg||Ether Extract (Oil)%||Crude Fibre %||Lysine %||Meth. %||Calcium
Summary of Performance Characteristics of Snails
(A. marginata) Fed with or without composed ration
|Parameters (Mean)||Pawpaw Leaf alone||Pawpaw Leaf plus Compounded Ration||Pawpaw Fruit alone||Pawpaw Fruit plus Compounded Ration|
|Dry Matter Feed Intake (G/WEEK)||41.8||46.9||42.3||47.9|
|Weight Gain (G/WEEK)||7.13||11.87||7.23||12.23|
|Feed Conversion Ratio||5.86||3.95||5.85||5.82|
|Weight of Eggs (G/WEEK)||4.51||5.65||4.54||5.82|
|Weight of the Hatchling||4.40||5.54||4.46||5.75|
Read Also: Ways to make more Money as a Snail Farmer