Effect of intensification on feed management of dairy cows in the Central Highlands of Kenya.

Abstract

As population density increases, crops and livestock become increasingly integrated as farming systems intensify. In order to increase output per unit of land farmers are forced to alter feeding practices as availability of feed resources change. In order to make appropriate recommendations to farmers it is important to understand these changes. The present paper describes a study in two areas in the Central highlands of Kenya representing areas of low and high population density and consequently low (LI) and high (HI) levels of intensification. Quantity and source (on or off-farm) of feed DM offered by type and milk production were monitored regularly for one year. Seasonal effects were considered by comparing parameters measured in months above and below average rainfall recorded in each area. Numbers of animals owned were higher in LI compared to HI, and milk production per animal similar. However production expressed per unit of land, an indicator of intensification was significantly higher (p

Citation

Romney, D.L.; Utiger, C.; Kaitho, R.; Thorne, P.; Wokabi, A.; Njoroge, L.; Chege, L.; Kirui, J.; Kamotho, D.; Staal, S. Effect of intensification on feed management of dairy cows in the Central Highlands of Kenya. In: Owen, E., Smith, T., Steele, M.A., Anderson, S., Duncan, A.J., Herrero, M., Leaver, J.D., Reynolds, C.K., Richards, J.I. and Ku-Vera, J.C. (eds), Responding to the livestock revolution: the role of globalization and implications for poverty alleviation. British Society of Animal Science Publication No. 33. Nottingham University Press, Nottingham, UK (2004) 167-178. ISBN 9781904761518

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