MYAGDI, July 10: Farmers in Myagdi district are attracted to sheep farming these days due to its low investment and high profitability.
Estimated average income for a sheep farmer is a million rupees per year.
Many young men returning from foreign employment are investing millions of rupees in sheep farming.
Laxman Purja, a resident of Raghu Ganga Rural Municipality-1, came into sheep farming three months ago with an investment of Rs 3.8 million.
He was attracted to sheep farming as he saw people earning well from the business.
He bought a total of 309 sheep and three dogs for their security from Marke Lake of Mustang district.
“I will further expand my business. This is a risky business but I am sure I will earn profit,” Laxman said, “I took loan for this venture. But I am sure I will settle it soon.”
There are many enthusiastic sheep farmers like Laxman in Belkhola, Histan, Ghar, Shikh, Dana, Vurung, and Tatopani areas of Annapurna Rural Municipality. These villages form the Kaligandaki Corridor.
A fully grown sheep can be sold for anything between Rs 15,000 and Rs 35,000 and the price goes higher during the festive seasons. The farmers get “super existed” when customers come to the village in search for sheep during the festive season.
According to Dum Bahadur Ramjali, President of Milijuli Group, farmers get training these days to enhance their skills of sheep farming.
“Besides training there is some grant to buy sheep, and health checkup facility, and other supports as well,” Ramjali said. “The group immediately helps the farmers if sheep get sick.”
According to Dilli Ram Regmi, Technician at the District Livestock Office, there are 65 commercial sheep farmers in the Kaligandaki Corridor.
“There are 65 commercial sheep farmers with around 12,000 sheep in the Corridor.” he said: “Large numbers of youths returning from foreign employment are attracted to this business. We have found them to be using modern technology.”
According to him, each farmer has around 50 to 900 farmers. “As the number of farmers is increasing with each passing year, the Livestock Department introduced a program with a fund of seven million rupees to help the farmers,” he added.
As per the Department data, there are 7,000 sheep in Raghu Ganga, 3,900 in Myagdi Corridor and additional 400 sheep in other areas.
The office also gives compensation to the farmers if a sheep dies from other reason than natural disaster. The animal insurance has provided much relief to the farmers.