RICKY MALOLOS is a chemical engineer who is very much into duck raising in Sto. Tomas, Batangas. Several years back, he was taking care of 20,000 mallards for egg production. Unfortunately the feeds he was buying from a well known firm was so poor, he lost a lot of his flock. In 2012, only 2,000 of the 20,000 ducks were left.
He did not give up, however. He looked for solutions. He was able to come up with his own feeding scheme that is effective yet economical. He now has a flock of 16,000 ducks. Many of them are young and not yet laying so he averages a collection of about 6,000 eggs daily. With his own feeding scheme, feed costs less than P5 per egg. On the other hand, uncooked duck egg for making balut fetches P9 apiece, so there’s a good profit margin in producing eggs for balut making.
Mr. Malolos has put up his own balut making facilities. There’s value adding here because balut now retails at P15 each. He also makes salted eggs using the improved technology developed by Dr. Jovita Datuin.
What’s his feeding formula for his layers that is economical and effective? He feeds his layers with 50 percent layer mash from New Hope feedmill and 50 percent of his own concoction of chopped Trichantera leaves (a.k.a. Madre de Agua) and D-1 or first class rice bran. Lately, he has started feeding shell from Laguna Lake to his flock. The eggshell, he said, is thicker and so there is less breakage.
EXCITED ABOUT IMPROVED MALLARD – Mr. Malolos was one of five commercial raisers who received from the Bureau of Animal Industry a set of 1,000 ducklings of the improved mallard which is a result of the studies of Dr. Rene Santiago and other experts from UP Los Baños (Dr. Lambio), financially supported by PCAARRD or Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development.
This improved mallard, Ricky says, starts laying at 4.5 months old compared to the ordinary strain which starts laying at 5-6 months old. The improved breed has black and brown feathers and is heavier at 1.2 kilos at maturity. It also lays more eggs.
Mr. Malolos is still multiplying this new mallard and hopes to sell ducklings when he will be in a position to supply the demand. Right now, he is hatching for his own farm. The price per duckling will be P40 compared to current P30 of the old strain.