Animal and land resource management practices leading to ecological sustainability of smallholder dairy farms in different agro-ecozones of West Bengal, India


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Authors

  • THE LATE E K CHAKI Associate Professor, West Bengal University of Animal and Fishery Sciences, Kolkata, West Bengal 700 037 India
  • S PAN Professor and Head, Department of Livestock Production and Management, West Bengal University of Animal and Fishery Sciences, Kolkata, West Bengal 700 037 India
  • A K SANTRA Professor, Department of Livestock Production and Management, College Of Veterinary Science And Animal Husbandry, Anjora, Durg
  • DURGA CHAURASIA Assistant Professor, Department of Anatomy, College Of Veterinary Science And Animal Husbandry, Anjora, Durg
  • KIRAN KUMARI Assistant Professor, Department of Instructional Livestock Farm Complex, College Of Veterinary Science And Animal Husbandry, Anjora, Durg
  • NISHMA SINGH S.M.S., K.V.K., Rajnandgaon

https://doi.org/10.56093/ijans.v85i10.52424

Keywords:

Ecological pressure, Forest land, Grazing, Herd size, Humid zone, Soil type

Abstract

A study was conducted on the existing animal and land resource management of small holder dairy farms in 3 agro-ecozones of West Bengal. The study revealed that overall average dairy herd size was 5.47 LU in agroecozone I (sub-humid with red and lateritic soils of Purulia) followed by agro-ecozone II [(2.64 LU), warm perhumid with brown and red hill soils and agro-ecozone of Darjeeling], III [(2.63 LU), hot subhumid to humid with alluvial soils of North 24 Parganas]. Proportions of large and medium sized herds were also considerably higher i.e. 58.9 and 30%, respectively, in agro-ecozone I. This showed greater ecological pressure from dairy animals in agro-ecozone I. It was also further revealed that 78.7% of total stock comprising nondescript cattle and buffaloes in agro-ecozone I while farmers, in agro-ecozone II kept crossbred cattle (83.3%) in their herds. Favourable climatic conditions, long term crossbreeding by dairy cooperatives and availability of green fodder might be the reasons of raising higher concentration of crossbred cattle in this agro-ecozone. In agro-ecozone III owing to hot and humid
climatic condition and higher intensity of crop production, farms maintained both nondescript (33%) and crossbred cattle (67%) of total herd strength in low density depending upon their financial capabilities. These animals were
mostly raised on crop residues and byproducts under stall-fed condition thus creating lesser ecological pressures as
compared to those of other 2 zones. It was also further revealed that 100% respondents farms in agro-ecozone I
used pastures and post harvested croplands regularly and 31% used forestlands occasionally or regularly for grazing their stock. Farms in this zone practiced on an average 6.7 h of grazing/day which was much higher than agroecozone II (0.37 h) and agro-ecozone III (1.55 h). The differences in the utilization pattern of different types of
grazing lands between 2 dairying sectors were not remarkable except that use of forest under unorganized sectors
was much higher than organized sector in agro-ecozone I.

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2015-10-08

Published

2015-10-08

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How to Cite

CHAKI, T. L. E. K., PAN, S., SANTRA, A. K., CHAURASIA, D., KUMARI, K., & SINGH, N. (2015). Animal and land resource management practices leading to ecological sustainability of smallholder dairy farms in different agro-ecozones of West Bengal, India. The Indian Journal of Animal Sciences, 85(10), 1108–1111. https://doi.org/10.56093/ijans.v85i10.52424
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