A federal government agency, the National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) says it has harvested over 30,000 litres of rabbit urine and 1,000 kg of rabbit droppings for fertiliser production in the country.
The Executive Secretary of the NALDA, Prince Paul Ikonne, while briefing newsmen in Abuja, said the rabbit urine and droppings were subjected to laboratory analysis and rabbit farmers were already realising income from it.
Similarly, Ikonne said the authority had identified and recovered NALDA’s abandoned farm estates across the country following directives by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He stated that recoveries were made from 21 states, including Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Borno, Delta, Ekiti and Kaduna.
Ikonne added that the NALDA had started reactivating them in phases and was already in partnership with some state governments to reactivate abandoned state-owned farm estates.
According to him, the reconstruction and reactivation of the abandoned Acharaugo Farm Estate in Imo State, comprising 20 poultry pens, goat pens, crop farming areas and a feed mill, had begun and was expected to be completed by August 2021.
In Ebonyi State, the Authority was in the process of reactivating the hatchery farm in Nkaliki, while it had initiated a programme called NALDA Integrated Farms, to be established in all the 109 senatorial districts across the country, he said.
The NALDA boss said they had begun dry season rice farming in Adamawa, Niger, Yobe, Taraba and Bauchi, as pilot states.
Farmers using rabbit urine in the production save on pesticide and fertilizer costs as the liquid offer major nutrients required by crops.
Organic fertilizer companies and a few rabbit farmers are turning the urine into a business venture. Rabbit droppings also serve as organic manure and help to boost nitrogen and ammonia content in crops.
NALDA has recovered farm estates that were abandoned in the last 20 years in Katsina, Ekiti, Gombe, Borno, Adamawa, Taraba, Niger, Kebbi, Oyo, Imo, Lagos, Delta, Bauchi, Yobe, Kaduna, Benue, Kogi, Osun, Anambra, Akwa Ibom and Abia States.
It plans to start animal husbandry programme, which included rabbitry and goat rearing in some pilot states that have recorded huge success.
The rabbit rearing programme kicked off about three months ago after President Muhammadu Buhari flagged off the National Young Farmers Scheme, NYFS, in November 2020. The pilot States for the programme are Imo, Abia, Oyo and Cross River.