Economics of poultry manure utilization in land quality improvement among integrated poultry-maize-farmers in South western Nigeria
Keywords:Economics, poultry manure, farmers, land improvement, Nigeria
The rapid growth of Nigerian's poultry has made it more advantageous in terms of providing the essential raw material for soil fertility enhancement than other livestock. This paper evaluates the benefits of poultry manure use among integrated poultry-maize farmers in Ekiti and Osun States of Nigeria for improved land quality and continuous food production. Data were collected using Structured survey questionnaires administered on 500 randomly selected respondents in the two States. Data were analysed with descriptive statistics and costs and returns techniques. Respondents were small holders, with land area grown to mazie varying between 0.01 and 3.00 hectare. Majority of the respondents have personal farms but applied poultry manure only on small portions (25%) of the total cropped area of their farmlands. On the average, 53% of the respondents used poultry manure on their farms. Respondents were fairly literate with a mean age of 43 years. Major constraints to poultry manure use include odour, transportation, scarcity, wetness, bulkiness and time wastage in descending order of importance. While odour and transportation were identified as common problems among poultry manure users in Ekiti and Osun States, bulkiness was an additional constraint for non-user respondents in both states. Poultry manure material constituted about 91% of the total cost of inputs; transportation cost was 8% while labour cost averaged 2%. The mean net income earned per annum by poultry manure users was 1.40 times higher than that for non-users. The difference in mean net income users and non-users of poultry manure constitutes an important land improvement technique capable of enhancing farm production and income levels. Thus, technologies aimed at packaging it in such a way as to remove the associated social constraints to its use by farmers need be put in place.