FARM BUILDINGS AND STRUCTURES
1. Identify different types of farm buildings and structures.
2. Outline the uses of the various buildings and structures.
3. Explain how the different buildings and structures on the farm can be maintained.
READ MY POST ON FARM STORAGE FACILITY HERE
Types of farm buildings and structures
Farming is mainly concerned with the production of plant and animal products. This production process cannot be completely achieved without some major facilities being available on the farm.
These basic facilities arc the farm buildings and structures. Farm buildings and structures are of different types. The types that may found on a farm will depend on the amount of capital at the farmer’s disposal, climatic conditions. Materials available for construction. the nature of the farm, the purpose for the construction and others.
Farm buildings All buildings on the farm are collectively referred to as farmstead. They include:
(a) Dwelling house: On large farms, there may be the need to have a house of residence for the farmer and his family, or farm workers like the farm manager and livestock attendants.
(b) Administrative building: This provides the headquarters or base of all operations on the farm. It is a building with office Space and facilities. It is usually located at the centre of the farm.
(c) Animal (livestock) buildings: These are buildings meant to farm animals like poultry, goats, sheep, pigs, cattle,and the nature of Venture. For examples fowls may be reared in deep litter house, goats and sheep and cattle in a shed. Milking cows in pens, pigs in stye, e.t.c
(d) Workshop: This is a building used for the repair and servicing of farm machines and implements.
(e) Farm shop: This is a building where the products from the farm are sold out to members of the public.
(f) Farm store: The store is a building devoted to the safe-keeping of different items on the farm. These items could be processed farm products like bags of corn or rice, tools, machines and machine parts, chemicals, and so on.
g) Plant nurseries: These are buildings where young seedlings are raised before they are transplanted into the open field. Factors to Consider in Farmstead Construction
(a) Fertility of the soil: The least fertile areas of the farm should be used for construction of buildings.
(b) Topography: This has to do with the slope of the land. Flat land should be used to avoid the problem of erosion.
(c) Accessibility: Farm buildings should be constructed on parts of the farm that can be reached with ease. Such buildings should be linked with good paths to facilitate movement to and from the buildings.
(d) Protection: Farm buildings should be constructed in areas where they will be protected from wind destruction (that is, they should not be orientated along the windward slope): erosion, and fire hazards.
(e) The use of the building: The construction of a building will be influenced by its intended use and duration of use.
(f) Materials available: The materials available for construction are also considered before construction is embarked upon.
In some instances, sawn planks are used instead of cement blocks, while in others, split bamboos may be used. Farm structures Apart from concrete buildings, there are several other structures on the farm.
These structures could he of temporary or permanent nature. depending on their uses.
The following are the structures commonly found on the farm:
(a) Storage structure:
These are used for storing farm produce or different kinds. They include:
(i) Yam barn for storing yam tubers:
The yam barn is constructed by fitting vertical poles into the ground. Horizontal poles are tied to the vertical poles are fitted to the horizontal poles to which the yam tubers are tied singly in a horizontal position.
(ii) Silos: These are tower-like structures usually built of aluminum and are used for storing dried grains like maize and sorghum (guinea corn).
(iii) Cribs: These are structures used for storing unshelled maize on the farm. Processing structures: These are structures used for the processing of different kinds of produce on the farm.
They include cassava mill, rice mill, abattoir (for slaughtering animals) milk pasteurizing shed (for sterilizing fresh milk) fish/meal smoking or drying shed.
This is a structure constructed round the farm. Fence could be any of the following types:
1. Barbed wire fence 2. Hedge or live fence 3. Post and rail fence 4. Wire netting fence 5. Wall fence 6. Electric fence.
Fence serves several purposes on the farm. These include:
1. To protect the crops and animals.
2. To demarcate boundaries.
3. To prevent thieves from gaining easy access to the farm.
4. To improve the grazing habit of animals such as in rotational grazing.
5. To control animal breeding habit.
6. To reduce the spread of pests and disease organisms
7. To add beauty to the farm.
(d) Gates and porter’s lodge: these are attached to the fence at the entrance into the farm. The gate is controlled by the mate-man who stays in the porter’s lodge. It is used to control movement In ti out of the farm. Gates are also found in animal pens and fenced paddocks. They are used to control the movement of the animals.
(c) Other Structures include: Roads, electricity generating plant. Bore- holes and dam for supplying water to the farm, spray races .mil dips for removing ecto or external parasites from animals crushes for restricting animal movement, manure pits and water tanks.
A11 these are collectively referred to as utility structures.
Maintenance of farm buildings and structures
Buildings and structures on the farm require adequate maintenance if they are to last for a long time and perform the K
functions they are meant for.
Therefore, it is necessary that the farmer carries out frequent and regular checks on all the structures on the farm to ensure that they are in proper form.
The following are some of the ways farm buildings and structures can he maintained:
1. Concreting The floors of buildings should be made of concrete to avoid cracking and wearing away. Concreted floors do not provide hideouts for rodents and other pests of farm produce.
2. Painting, Oiling or Greasing The wooden parts of buildings and structures should be painted with anti-insects chemicals such as sorghum to prevent them from being damaged by termites and other insects.
Also, metal parts should be painted with anti-rust paint especially tanks and other materials used in storing water. Other metal materials that arc likely to become rusty after sometime should be painted with oil paint, oiled, or greased.
3. Seasoning Wooden materials used in building and construction of farm structures should be seasoned, that is properly dried before being used. This will help to protect the wood from insect damage and the possibility of the structure becoming slacked after some times.
4. Regular inspection and repairs All farm structures should be checked frequently and age should be repaired without delay. The damaged parts of any building or structure should be-replaced new ones. Openings on the walls of building should Be covered to prevent rodents from in them.
5. Cleaning It is important to keep buildings and structures clean as this helps to prolong their lifespan. Water tanks should be cleaned always abattoris, milking sheds, processing structures and others need cleaning. Storage structures should be cleaned after the odd consignment has been removed before bringing in new ones.
6. Roofing The tops of farm buildings, should be properly roofed to make them rat proof. Asbestos, iron, or aluminum sheets should be used instead of thatched roofs. This helps to protect the buildings against too much sun, rainstorm, and rats.
7. Bracing of Walls Wall and heavy roofs should be supported by pillars to make them strong and prevent them from collapsing.
FACTORS TO CONSIDER BEFORE ERECTING FARM BUILDING
Factors to be considered in site selection;
Nearness to a source of water
Direction of the prevailing wind
Direction of the sun
Personal whims and preference
Nearness to means of communication.
153. FUNGAL DISEASES