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Improving Livestock Water Productivity in Indo-Ganga Basin of India
                    Amare Haileslassie1, Michael Blümm...
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Improving livestock water productivity in Indo-Ganga Basin of India

Poster prepared by Amare Haileslassie, Michael Blümmel, Floriane Clement, Katrien Descheemaeker and Tilahun Amede for the ILRI Annual Program Meeting (APM) 2010, held at ILRI campus, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, April 14-17, 2010.

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Improving livestock water productivity in Indo-Ganga Basin of India

  1. 1. Improving Livestock Water Productivity in Indo-Ganga Basin of India Amare Haileslassie1, Michael Blümmel1, Floriane Clement2, Katrien Descheemaeker12, Tilahun Amede12, 1International Livestock Research Institute, 2International Water Management Institute Introduction Because of the inevitable scarcity of water in the Indo-Ganga Basin (IGB), we have explored three options for improving the Livestock Water Productivity (LWP): I) increasing animal productivity; II) improving supply of quality feed and III) improving feed water productivity. Farm clusters selected from two districts of IGB, representing intensive and semi-intensive mixed crop-livestock systems, were the unit of analysis. Key interventions pertinent to the three options were identified using a participatory approach. Gap analysis (potential vis a vis actual) were made, for interventions that were preferred by farmers. To see the impacts of these interventions, on LWP, the value of potential productivity ( e.g. milk yield) were built into the LWP spreadsheet model. Inputs into the model and the results are summarized below. I: Improving Breed and Feed Supply Increases LWP In this option achieving potential milk yield of 15 liters animal-1 day,-1 through improved breed, was targeted and the levels of milk increase were separated into three: 9, 12, and 15 liters. The objective Control 9 Lit 12 Lit 15 Lit Control 9 Lit 12 Lit 15 Lit was to see if increased Dry Matter Intake (DMI), to produce the targeted milk yield, depletes more 20000 L iters w a ter p er liter o f 3000 Liters of w ater p er liter m ilk water than what it contributes to the milk production and thereby improve LWP. The results 16000 indicated: 2000 Figure 1A 12000 Figure 1B m ilk 8000 1000 • >100% improvement in water productivity of dairy cows (Fig 1A and 1B). 4000 0 0 • Those farms in the medium and poor clusters and semi-intensive system saved Poor Medium Better-off Poor Medium Rich Farm clusters more water (Fig 1A and 1B) than the intensive system and better-off farm cluster. Farm clusters • For a basin-wide sustainable water use, improvement of breeds and increased adoption at low water productivity system and for medium and poor farm clusters is more important. Figure 1: Impact of improving breed and achieving potential milk yield from a mixed herd model on dairy water productivity in intensive (Fig 1A) and semi- II: Improving Livestock Feed Quality Saves Water intensive crop livestock systems (Fig 1B) of Indo-Ganga Basin In this option improvement in milk yield was linked to Metabolizable Energy (ME) denser feed 9 Lit 12 Lit 15 Lit 9 Lit 12 Lit 15 Lit (good quality, ~8.5 MJ kg-1) supply. Here less quantity of DMI was considered (compared to 140 yr-1 cow -1) 140 option I) to satisfy the ME need of the cows for the different levels of milk. The results indicated: Figure 2B W ater saved (m year cow ) 120 -1 120 100 100 -1 • When good feed quality is provided to a high milk yielding breed, more water can -3 80 80 -3 Water saved (m be saved than the low quality feed (Fig 2A and 2B)) 60 Figure 2A 60 40 40 20 • If higher feed quality targeted and option II and III combined, more water saving 20 0 0 is possible, but livestock production can be costly and poor farmers can not afford Poor Medium Rich Poor Medium Better-off Farm clusters Farm clusters • The current low feed quality can be improved by chopping, block making, selective cropping, improved feed storage and improved time of harvesting… Figure 2: Volume of water saved by changing feed quality, from low to good in intensive (Fig 2A) and semi-intensive systems (Fig 2B) of Indo-Ganga Basin. III: Water Productive Metabilizable Energy Matters Control 9 Lit 12Lit 15Lit Control 9Lit 12Lit 15Lit In a mixed crop livestock system, where agricultural byproducts serve as animal feed, increasing 3000 20000 Liters water per liters of m ilk crop productivity is analogous to increasing feed ME water productivity. The current gap between Liters of water per liter of milk 16000 actual and potential is >100%. We assumed 20, 60 and 100% increase in water productivity of ME 2000 Figure 3A Figure 3B 12000 corresponding to the three levels of milk increase and applied DMI as in option I. The results indicated : 1000 8000 4000 • ME water productivity option reduced the water use per liter of milk to the value 0 0 less than the world average (e.g. intensive system (Fig 3A)). Poor Medium Rich Poor Medium Better-off Farm clusters Farm clusters • When a unit increase in milk yield was compared with a unit increase in ME water productivity, water saving from the latter was higher by 4-13%. Figure 3: Impact of improving ME water productivity on dairy water productivity in intensive (Fig 3A) and semi-intensive crop livestock systems (Fig 3B) of Indo-Ganga • But the poor has less access to land to be benefited from this alternative. Options Basin are to improve access to feed and milk market and better management of common property resources. The good news is … And the not so good news is … Livestock augment system water productivity by converting agricultural Livestock water productivity, in the business as usual scenario, is unsustainable byproducts into high quality human nutrition and this role can be enhanced and shows variations between systems, farms and breeds and understanding these through integration of livestock water productivity concept and practices into variations and their drivers suggests that, by improving animal productivity, April 2010 crop-livestock systems intensification pathway. quality feed supply and water saving, livestock negative impact on sustainable water use can be mitigated. This poster presents findings from CP68: projects of the CGIAR Challenge Program on Water and Food (CPWF). The authors are grateful to the CPWF generous financial support.