Mengintip Balapan Burung Merpati di Satoplas Ciranjang

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Kab Cianjur, –

Burung dara atau merpati merupakan salah satu jenis burung yang sudah familier untuk dibudidayakan. Jenis merpati yang sudah umum diternakkan antara lain merpati pedaging, merpati pos dan merpati balap.

Bagi masyarakat Indonesia ternak burung merpati adalah sebuah hal yang lumrah. Di Indonesia sendiri, merpati balap memiliki cukup banyak penggemar. Bahkan para penggemar merpati balap ini tergabung dalam sebuah komunitas Persatuan Penggemar Merpati Balap Sprint Indonesia (PPMBSI).

Pecinta merpati balap juga tidak terbatas dari kalangan atas, tetapi hampir semua lapisan masyarakat telah lama menyukai permainan adu kecepatan merpati ini. Menurut Ibeng DMD, pemilik merpati yang di beri nama “bagong kecil* asal Desa Cipeuyeum Haurwangi, Cianjur Jawa Barat, beternak merpati balap sebenarnya termasuk kegiatan mudah. Namun ada satu syarat yang wajib dipenuhi dan tidak bisa dikesampingkan, yaitu memahami faktor keturunan dari unggas yang dibudidaya. Peternak musti mengenal keturunan atau gen ini.

“Kami menyebutnya trah, tiap merpati balap punya trah. Biasanya, trah unggulan berasal dari merpati balap yang sudah tak diragukan kualitasnya. Trah unggulan juga belum tentu bisa menghasilkan kualitas yang sama seperti moyangnya,” jelas Ibeng kepada

Mengingat faktor keturunan sangat diperhitungkan dalam budidaya merpati balap, maka, proses pemilihan indukan merupakan salah satu bagian terpenting. Sebab indukan sendiri merupakan penentu utama untuk mendapatkan keturunan yang berkualitas baik.

Ibeng mengatakan indukan unggul memiliki beberapa kriteria. Seperti sepasang indukan harus dalam kondisi sehat, tidak cacat dan berusia produktif antara satu tahun sampai 1,5 tahun.

“Indukan unggulan ini juga bisa dilihat dari sisi fisik burungnya, biasanya punya bentuk paruh yang besar dan badannya tegap,” kata Ibeng

Biasanya, budidaya merpati balap untuk tahap awal dilakukan di dalam kandang saja. Baru setelah berumur di atas empat bulan, si merpati bisa dilatih di lapangan.

Selain memilih indukan yang unggul, hal lain yang juga harus diperhatikan adalah proses perawatan dan pemeliharaan. Nano yang akrab dipanggil donal, peternak merpati balap sekaligus penghobi asal Desa Hegarmanah, Bojongpicung,Cianjur, Jawa Barat mengatakan kebersihan kandang dan manajemen pakan adalah dua hal penting dalam proses perawatan.

Kandang itu wajib dibersihkan tiga hari sekali atau maksimal seminggu sekali.

“Airnya diganti, kotorannya dibersihkan dan diberi insektisida untuk mengusir serangga yang berbahaya. Kandang yang bersih bisa membuat burung lebih sehat,” ujar Nano.

Sedangkan manajemen pemberian pakan juga harus dilakukan dengan selektif. Lantaran burung merpati termasuk jenis burung yang doyan makan.

Biasanya, pemberian pakan dilakukan di luar kandang untuk melatih merpati balap agar tidak asing dengan lingkungan dan dunia luar.

“Jenis pakan bisa pakai voer khusus burung atau biji-bijian, seperti padi, gandum dan jagung. Disesuaikan ukuran tubuh si burung,” jelas Nano. Merpati balap harus rutin dilatih di ruang terbuka pukul 09.00-11.00 saat udara masih segar.imbuhnya.

( dhen )

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