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CHARACTERISTICS OF RURAL SUBSISTENCE SMALL HOLDER LIVESTOCK PRODUCTION SYSTEM IN MOUNTAINOUS AREAS OF NWFP, PAKISTAN

R. N. Khan and R. H. Usmani

Animal Sciences Division, Pakistan Agricultural Research council, P.O. Box 1031, Islamabad, Pakistan

Abstract

     A study was conducted in the rural mountainous areas of North West Frontier Province of Pakistan to characterize small holder’s subsistence livestock production system. Livestock farmers (n=82) were interviewed in 16 villages of Batagram and Mansehra districts. The farmers were keeping on an average 4 buffalos, 1 cattle, 12 sheep or 13 goats per household. More than 94% farmers were keeping 4 buffaloes per household as compared to only 40% keeping 1 or 2 cattle. Buffaloes were main dairy animals producing 7.9 liters of milk/day or 2370 liters per lactation of 300 days. Local non-descript cows were producing only 2.5 liters of milk per day. Animals of all species were found to be underfed, as they depended mostly on self growing local grasses for grazing.  Only milking animals were offered some concentrates in the form of cottonseed cake and wheat bran. Milk was mostly consumed at the household level or converted into butter oil. Age at first calving and calving interval of buffaloes were longer than those of cows. Incidence of livestock diseases was high in the area. Major diseases in cattle and buffaloes were haemorrhagic septicaemia and internal parasites. Pleuropneumonia and parasitism were major disease problems in small ruminants. It was estimated that gross profit averaged Rs. 32475 per buffalo, Rs. 3320 per sheep and Rs. 5314 per goat per year. Gross margin for cattle was negative and the farmers were sustaining a loss of Rs. 1960 per cow per year. Keeping in view the poor production environments, the overall performance of animals was encouraging and offered considerable scope for improvement. 

Key words: Pakistan, livestock, small holder, production system, gross margin analysis.

 
   

ISSN 0253-8318 (Print)
ISSN 2074-7764 (Online)



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