Snail Farming Equipment – Things to Know About Snail Farming
Snail farming is a subset of livestock farming and it is one of the farming businesses that thrive best in Nigeria. Snails are slow-moving creatures classified biologically as “mollusks”.
Other animals in this class are mussels and slugs. Besides being used for industrial activities such as the manufacturing of beauty and pharmaceutical products, snails (but not all) are suitable for consumption and thousands of people have taken advantage of this to rear them for human consumption.
Heliciculture is often regarded as the act of raising land snails and it has become a profit-yielding activity for those who engage in it.
Snails can be found in varied habitats including freshwater, land and seas and they occur in different species some of which are suitable for farming purposes.
In the latter case, you can establish snail farming on a small scale or large scale depending on your proposed capital input, the purpose of farming and other critical factors.
If you intend to start snail farming as a subsistence farmer, you won’t have to produce snails on a large scale because the snails produced are actually meant for personal consumption. However, for commercial purposes, farmers tend to produce and rear snails on a large scale.
Like many other animals, snails exist across many parts of the world but the most suitable snail breeds for farming purposes are found in continents like Africa, Europe, Asia, South America and North America. Meanwhile, the different species of snails are spread across places where they are certain to flourish in.
As implied earlier, snails are eatable but not all snail species are suitable for human consumption.
In fact, certain snail species are poisonous while some other species secrete substances needed for industrial activities like production of cosmetics.
Above all, the interesting feature of snails is that most of the large species found on land are suitable for human consumption. That being said, snails have become part of the delicacies people consume at restaurants and eateries.
The importance of snail farming goes a long way to involve easy management and low capital setup. Besides, snails are not selective in terms of food as they can be given a broad category of feeds including vegetables, industrial offshoots, fruits and living plants.
Regarding their choice of food, many people see snails as being on the borderline of herbivores and omnivores. If they were absolute herbivores, they wouldn’t feed on anything other than plants but since they adapt to many kinds of food, it is reasonable to assume that they are partly herbivorous and partly omnivorous.
In addition to their feeds, snails need adequate water for drinking and they should be kept in cool places characterized by shadiness. It is very dangerous to expose them to sunlight as this makes them dehydrate and lose fertility gradually.
Snails are very easy to rear but before you start the business of snail farming, you should be familiar with many things about snails including the implements needed to manage them in the most suitable manner for commercial benefits.
First and foremost, you need to situate your snail pen in an area with moderate humidity and a favorable soil type. Meanwhile, the loamy soil has been described as the best soil for snail rearing especially when established for commercial purposes.
Snail Farming Equipment
Snail farming equipment may include the usual implements used for other farming purposes but because snails need regular moisture, their environment must not be devoid of water.
Regarding this, a snail farmer needs a certain device for sprinkling water over the soil. This will enrich the soil by providing it with moisture needed by snails. Therefore, you can equip your snail pen with watering cans for spraying the soil with water that should keep it moist.
After constructing a snail pen, equipment should be provided to regulate the climate. In this regard, humidifiers are needed to ensure the temperature level is fixed at 16° to 24°C. . While constructing a modern snail pen, it is important to equip it with a drainage system especially if the soil is partly loamy and partly sandy.
A number of implements are required to raise snails properly, keep their temperature at a moderate level and keep their house clean. Below are some of the important implements for snail farming.
- Plastic bucket: This is a container needed for holding or carrying water or other liquids you may need in your snail pen
- Rake: This is needed to pack weeds or grass together after cutting them. Also, you can use a rake in keeping the loose soil of your snail pen smooth
- Tape measure: This is needed especially while constructing a snail pen to measure the length of the snail pen. Depending on the number of snails it will contain, a typical snail pen can have the width of 1 meter plus the height of 70 cm
- Hand trowel: This is one of the tools that will be needed to keep a snail pen clean. Meanwhile, it is a hand-held implement with an arched scoop for lifting plants
- Watering can: This is needed for spraying water over the soil on a regular basis
- Cutlass: This can be used in clearing your snail pen of weeds
- Feeding trough: This comes in the form of an open container needed to feed snails. When you want to feed your snails, it is safe to place the food in a feeding trough from which they can eat. You can also use a feeding trough in providing snails with water
- Weighing scale: This is needed in determining the weights of snails
- Hoe: This is a hand-held farming tool and it is one of the implements you can use in clearing your snail pen of weeds
- Shovel: You can use a shovel in packing heaps of loamy soil for your snail pen especially if the snail pen has a concrete floor. You may have no choice but to use a concrete floor for your snail pen. In this case, a shovel will be needed to fill the pen with loamy soil
That’s all about Snail Farming Equipment, kindly check this page for more information on snail farming.