DA Bicol gives P3M poultry package to “Egg scholars”

SAN AGUSTIN, PILI, CAMARINES SUR – The Department of Agriculture Livestock and Poultry Program in Bicol recently gave scholarships in a form of complete poultry package to 10 college students taking agriculture courses.

Dubbed as “Egg Scholars”, these lucky students were selected from numerous applicants from the six provinces who have submitted their letter of intent or application together with a business plan. 

Dr. Marissa E. Guillermo, DA Bicol regional coordinator of Livestock and Poultry Program said that each scholar received worth P250,000.00 poultry package consisting of 200 heads ready to lay pullets (White Leg Horn); layer cage good for 240 chickens ; 36 bags feeds which will last for three months; and drugs and biologics. Each set of six feet housing composed of four layer cages (which can accommodate 4 hens), each measuring 14 inches x 18 inches with PVC feeders and waterers was installed at the areas of the scholars. The total poultry package amounted to P3million.

The recipients were Erica Bertes of Guinobatan, Albay studying at Bicol University College of Agriculture (BUCAF); Aileen Joy Bathan of San Lorenzo Ruiz, Camarines Norte, studying at Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA); Ella Mae Bitantes of Castilla, Sorsogon studying at Sorsogon State College; Ruby Joy Morados of Palanas, Masbate studying at DEBESMSCAT; Ceejay Vega Vargas of Virac, Catanduanes enrolled at Catanduanes State University (CSU). Meanwhile, five recipients came from Camarines Sur province and are currently enrolled at CBSUA in Pili, Cam. Sur. They are: Bryan Matthew Diaz from Goa, Cam. Sur; Mark Dominick Himantong of Tinambac, Cam. Sur (studying at CBSUA Calabanga campus); Jessa Monforte of Pili, Cam. Sur; Anna Marie Victorino of Ocampo, Cam Sur; and Julie Ann Reyes of Nabua, Cam. Sur.

The students’ counterpart was the housing for the chicken that could be made of light materials. 

The Livestock Program is continuously monitoring the scholars and extending necessary technical assistance to them in tandem with the poultry supplier. 

Although laborious, chicken egg production is a very profitable and rewarding business. The start up egg laying business will help the scholar’s family earn extra income by selling eggs which are considered as important basic commodity particularly at this pandemic time as they are rich in protein, vitamins and minerals.

White leghorn are prolific egg layers and a leghorn lays one (1) large white egg 5-7 days per week. A single hen has an average production of 280 eggs in a year. They are flighty and nervous making them resistant to predator. 

Over the week, DA Bicol Regional Executive Director Rodel P. Tornilla also turned over 2 poultry packages to CBSUA President Alberto N. Naperi to serve as technology showcase and venue of hands on learning for agriculture students.

Director Tornilla said that this project is a collaboration with the State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) in a bid to encourage more youths to pursue agricultural courses and put up their own agricultural enterprises in the long run. 

Poultry is one of the most lucrative businesses in agriculture. Although starting a poultry business may appear daunting, aspiring agripreneurs can surely succeed with perseverance and determination.

David French, a veterinarian at the United States’ third-largest poultry farm said that “successful (poultry) growers are voracious leaders. They read and study extensively and attend seminars.” (Lovella P. Guarin (DA-RAFIS 5)/photo credits: Eduardo Collantes, Jr and DA RFO 5 Livestock and Poultry Program )