Highlight of small ruminant production system in Bale, Southeastern Ethiopia
Oromia Agricultural Research Institute Sinana Agricultural Research Center Highlight of small ruminant production system in Bale, Southeastern Ethiopia Dawit AbateAfrica-RISING Quick Feed Project Inception Workshop, Addis Ababa, 7-8 May 2012
General features of Bale 14.93% Highland• It is x/ized by wide variety of geomorphic landscape Laga Hidha• Has 8 major agro- Gololcha Gassara ecological zones and 11 Agarfa Sawweyna Gindhir sub- ecologies. Dinsho -Dinsho Sinana Sinana Go Goro Gobba ro Rayitu• The land area coverage Barbare Dawe is roughly 67,330 sq.km Harana Gurra kachen Mana Angetu buluk Mana - dhamole 63.53% lowland• Bimodal rainfall, ranging Dawe serer from 600mm in the lowlands to 2300 in the Madda Walabu highlands• Average T0. ranges from 21.5% Midland 00C in the frost to 300C in the lowlands
General features of Bale …• The highland agro-ecologies are characterized by mixed crop/ livestock farming system• Where as agro-pastoralism is the main production systems and livestock play a great role in the low land• More than 95% of the population is depending on agriculture and 88% live in rural area(BZPEDO, 1999)
Problem identification and Technology generation prioritization and/or adaptationResearch at Sinana focus ono Crop improvement Feedo Natural resource and backo Livestock (mainly on feed resource improvement) Impact assessment and Technology dissemination feedback
Animal Feed and Range management research teamGeneral Objective• To improve the quantity and quality of feed resources in BaleThe team has being conducting research activities on:-• Forage Breeding/adaptation studies • Evaluation of forage crop germplasm • Adaptation studies • Breeder seed maintenance and multiplication• Forage Agronomy • Integrated forage and food crop production techniques/systems, • Forage seed production techniques.• Production system studies • Feed resource assessment • Livestock production (Dairy, small ruminants)• Feed technology demonstration and popularization
Forage crops demonstration at on-station and on-farm sites
Small ruminant production in BaleSmall Ruminant Population and Distribution• Bale has a huge resource of small ruminants Table. Livestock Population in Bale zone LS type Agro-pastoralist Highlands Total Cattle 1,021,156 1,273,446 2,294,602 Sheep 164,811 328,179 492,990 Goats 649,823 446,421 1,096,244 Equine 97,207 289,311 386,518 Camel 172,840 6,339 179,179 Source: (BZPEDO, 2004)
Small Ruminant Population and Distribution…• The existing sheep and goats breed are mainly Arsi-Bale breed• They have found in all agro-ecologies of the zone b/c they are easily integrated in to the d/t farming system• However, sheep production fits more in cereal production areas since they are grazer where as goats mainly keep in area of bushes and shrubs dominates• At very high altitudes of the areas, crop production is limited due to frost severity and hence small ruminant especially sheep production is predominant
Socio economic Importance• SR are playing an important role in livelihood of resource poor farmers.• They provide: • range of products (meat, milk, skin, manure) • used as source of income • security, gifts, religious rituals etc.• Generally, the contribution of small ruminant to food security and food self-sufficiency to the local community is highly significant.
Management of small Ruminants• The existing small ruminants are entirely indigenous breeds with traditional management practices• They have high production efficiency, due to their short generation length and high reproductive rates.• They appear to withstand drought better than cattle.• Most of the farmers confine their small ruminants in a room, which is part of the main family house.
Feed resources and feeding practices• Natural pasture, crop residue, stubble and fallow land are the major feed resources• Browse tree and shrubs also serve as good sources of feed for small ruminants especially in the lowlands• Grazing is done around homestead, on fallow land, community land, roadside and marginal land.• Grazing lands are largely owned communally and their productivity is very low mainly due to overgrazing.
Feed resources and feeding practices• Supplementary feeding of concentrates and utilization of improve forage crops are not as such practiced.• Generally, farmers have great interest to grow forage crops.• However, lack of forage seed and poor extension services have limited the utilization of improved forage crops.
Table 5. Feed resource and feeding calendar in highlands of BaleFeed type Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun July Aug Sep Oct Nov DecFeed shortageFree grazingCrop residueCrop aftermathFallow grazingGrass land openGrassland closed Source: survey data
Health and Disease• Diseases and parasites infections are the major constraints that contribute to the low productivity of small ruminants• The damage of animal is high during rainy seasons and feed shortage periods• Foot-rot, pneumonia and ticks were the major disease of the small ruminants especially in the highlands.• Apart from these frequent diseases, sudden out breaks of various diseases were also reported.• Mortality was reported to be high in the pre-weaning period especially after 1-2 months of birth.• Generally, the small ruminant health related issues have not yet fully studied in the zone.
Marketing• Small ruminants are usually sold to meet family needs – to buy food grains – clothing, – house hold miscellaneous petty expenses, – agricultural in puts (fertilizer, herbicides, improved seeds, – credit repayments• Seasonal shortage of rainfall through its impact on feed availability and crop failure forces higher supply of small ruminants to market.• The price fluctuates with the on set of drought, season (holidays), credit repayment time etc.• The market infrastructures such as roads are very poor. Farmers usually sell their animals to the local traders• Poor marketing chain is among the major problems related to small ruminants marketing system.
Major constraints• Shortage of adequate quantity and quality of feed resources • Low productivity of grazing land due to population pressures, over grazing, recurrent drought, bush encroachment and expansion of cultivation • The problem was critical in dry seasons.• The incidence of disease and parasites• Low genetic potential for some traits• Shortage of adequate and quality water
Major constraints…• Traditional management systems (poor housing, breed selection)• Poor access to the market • The marketing systems for livestock and their products is also not encouraging for agro-pastoralist far from market centers. • Poor infrastructure development such as roads.• Lack of livestock research and poor extension services • There is no/little intervention works done so far on the improvement of production and productivity of local breeds.
Suggested Interventions• Further work is required in introduction, on-farm evaluation and popularization of the demand driven and adaptive technologies for the livestock keeper of farming communities• Identifying constraints in small ruminant production system, marketing chains and developing short and important marketing value chains that benefits producers is also crucial.