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Gamebirds and other poultry


This page looks at poultry like gamebirds, waterfowl, pheasants, turkeys and quail – birds not covered on our “Poultry” and “Birds and farming” pages. This whether they are hosted or actively farmed.


Not only have gamebirds played a major role in human survival throughout ancient history, but all domestic turkeys and chickens also originate from them. South Africa offers a wide variety of game birds, some 14 huntable species of duck, two of geese, 10 partridge (francolin) species, guinea fowl and quail.


Gamebirds often reach far higher densities on farms, particularly grain and mixed farms, than in natural habitats or game farms. Farmers often regard gamebirds as a pest, yet they constitute an additional source of income. Farmers can be helped to develop hospitality services and to market shoots, so adding considerable value to their gamebirds. The infrastructure required to establish gamebird utilisation will readily support other forms of eco-tourism and recreational land use, such as hiking, birding, mountain-biking or to simply escape from cities.


Source: Abré J Steyn and Aldo Berruti (adapted)

Business environment


Role players


Note: Click to expand the headings below.  To get a free listing on our website like the ones below, visit here for more information or place your order hereDisclaimer: The role player listings are not vetted by this website.

Swanz – Specialise in the breeding of ducks, geese and swans
Pleysier Incubators – Incubators (setters, hatchers and brooders) for successful breeding of avian species including pheasants and waterfowl.
Cotton Traders – Linen and feathered products for the hospitality industry
 Representative Bodies
 Training, Consulting & Research Service Providers
 Community, NGO and NPO Service Providers

Websites and publications

Visit the websites of role players listed on this page.

  • Kejafa Knowledge Works supply publications relevant to this page. Visit for Raising DucksRaising Ducks & Geese and Raising Turkeys.
  • A Profile on Duck Meat, compiled by the Directorate Agro-processing Support at DALRRD, includes notes on duck production, processing and marketing. Find the document at
  • Crowe, T. and Little, R.M. 2012. Gamebirds of Southern Africa. 2nd edition. Johannesburg: Penguin Random House.
  • Dr Slang Viljoen (see “Role players” heading) has authored several publications on gamebirds.
  • Smit M. 2001. Goose Farming. Qualimark: Benrose.


Some articles



Find videos like “Duck farming (documentary) Modern Farming Methods in the Philippines” and “6 Reasons to Keep Quail” on YouTube.

Visit the following overseas-based websites:

  • Take “The Poultry Page” at for notes on various species relevant to this chapter
  • – “all about gamebirds”
  • American Gamebird Research Education & Development (AGRED) Foundation –
  • – Ducks Unlimited conserves, restores and manages wetlands and associated habitats for North America’s waterfowl. Their vision is “wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever”.

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