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Study on Cattle Feeding Practices in Relationship to Herd Size in Non-Tribal Area of Udaipur District of Rajasthan

Shweta Choudhary M. L. Gurjar Vikas Choudhary Padma Meel Subha Ganguly
Vol 8(10), 276-280

The present investigation was conducted in Mavli and Vallabhnagar tehsils of Udaipur district of Rajasthan. The study group included 160 cattle rearers from which were selected randomly from four villages of above two tehsils. Regarding feeding practices, combined grazing and stall feeding was followed by 58.13 per cent of the respondents and 45.63 per cent cattle keepers used harvested/fallow field as grazing site. Only 45.00 per cent of the respondents use to chaff the dry fodder before feeding. Home prepared concentrate mixture was given by 61.25 per cent of the respondents in the study area. Practice of soaking and boiling concentrate mixture was followed by 88.13 per cent of cattle keepers before feeding. Only 50 and 44.38 per cent of the respondents fed common salt and mineral mixture, respectively.

Keywords : Cattle feeding Herd size Non-Tribal Area Udaipur Village

Livestock are highly proficient users of available biomass as they consume grasses and other plants that cannot otherwise be consumed by humans and convert it to a range of valuable products viz. milk, meat, wool, leather, manure and draught power. The integration between crops and animals not only enhances agricultural production, but also improves household food intake and income and provides a buffer against climate risks (Thorton, 2010). A symbiotic relationship exists between men, land and livestock. Livestock is an economic enterprise and can also be considered as a ‘survival enterprise’ for millions of people in India (Premchand et al., 2014). Dairy farmers are encountered with several new challenges to sustain the growth and profitability. This calls for an analysis on the existing livestock feeding policy and infrastructure needed to optimize their productivity (Hegde, 2010).The main handicaps in the promotion of dairying along with the adverse climatic conditions are lack of green fodder, inadequate and unbalanced feeding, poor management, low genetic potential, inadequate veterinary aid and lack of market facilities. Even though the Rajasthan state is rich in the total animal population yet, the progress of animal husbandry does not seem to be satisfactory. This is mainly due to lack of detailed information on existing animal management especially the feeding practices adopted for different categories of livestock as a result of which it has not been possible for the policy planners to give full attention to these important aspects of cattle production.

The present research was focused giving due priority to the lack of detailed information on existing feeding practices adopted for different categories of livestock, it has not been possible for the policy planners to give full attention to these important aspects of cattle production (Rajendran and Prabhakaran, 1998; Garg et al., 2005; Sinha et al., 2009; Rathore et al., 2010; Ramchandra, 2012; Choudhary et al., 2017)

Materials and Methods

The study was conducted to collect the information on feeding management practices adopted by cattle rearers in Udaipur district of Rajasthan. The district comprised of 11 tehsils, out of which only these two selected tehsils Mavli, and Vallabhnagar were Non-tribal and rest nine are tribal. Further, four villages (Gadoli, Garda ki Bhagal, Golwara, Rahmi) from Mavli four villages (Ranchhorpura, Siyakheri, Roopawali, Netawala) from Vallabhnagar tehsil were identified and from each village 20 respondents were selected randomly.  Thus, the entire sample consists of 160 respondents from selected eight villages in two tehsils of the district. The data was collected through personal interview technique from each selected respondent. An interview schedule was prepared with the help of Department of Livestock Production Management, College of Veterinary and Animal Science, Navania, Vallabhnagar, Udaipur, District Animal Husbandry Department and experts of the subject.

The respondents were categorized on the basis of herd size of cattle possessed by them. The adult cattle units were calculated as either milch, dry, pregnant cattle or bull  assumed one adult unit and heifer and calf will be assume as 0.5 and 0.25 adult unit, respectively and respondents were classified as small (up to 1.5 units) medium from (1.6 to 4.5 units) and large (above 4.5 units) group. Six traits i.e. age, education level, herd size, land holding, family size and annual income of respondents were identified and statistically correlated with existing feeding management practices by using Chi Square (c2)  (Snedecor and Cochran, 1994).


Result and Discussion

Table 1: Feeding practices in cattle

S. No. Practices Small herd Medium herd Large herd Overall c2 value
Feeding of Animals
a Stall feeding 19(33.93) 35(43.75) 10(41.67) 64(40.00) 6.498
b Grazing 3(5.36) 0(0) 0(0) 3(1.88)
c Both 34(60.71) 45(56.25) 14(58.33) 93(58.13)
Stall Feeding Type
a Group 14(25.00) 22(27.50) 8(33.33) 44(27.50) 0.585
b Individual 42(75.00) 58(72.50) 16(66.67) 116(72.50)
Grazing site
a Common pasture land 7(12.50) 7(8.75) 3(12.50) 17(10.63) 16.661*
b Harvested /fallow land 30(53.57) 36(45.00) 7(29.17) 73(45.63)
c Own pasture land 0(00) 2(2.50) 4(16.67) 6(3.75)
d No grazing 19(33.93) 35(43.75) 10(41.66) 64(40.00)
Type of dry fodder
a Maize+dry grass 3(5.36) 8(10.00) 1(4.17) 12(7.50) 1.613
b Maize+dry grass+jowar 44(78.57) 58(72.50) 19(79.16) 121(75.63)
c Jowar+dry grass 9(16.07) 14(17.50) 4(16.67) 27(16.68)
Chaffing of dry fodder
    25(44.64) 35(43.75) 12(50.00) 72(45.00) 0.295
Chopping of green fodder
    25(44.64) 35(43.75) 12(50.00) 72(45.00) 0.295
Cultivation of green fodder
  43(76.79) 72(90.00) 20(83.34) 135(84.38) 4.386
Type of concentrate mixture
a Home prepared 33(58.93) 54(67.50) 11(45.84) 98(61.25) 6.196
b Readymade 15(26.79) 17(21.25) 11(45.83) 43(26.88)
c Mixture of home prepared & readymade 8(14.29) 9(11.25) 2(8.33) 19(11.88)
Pretreatment of concentrate mixture
a Soaking 7(12.50) 9(11.25) 3(12.50) 19(11.88) 0.059
b Soaking & boiling 49(87.50) 71(88.75) 21(87.50) 141(88.13)
Feeding of common salt
  31(55.36) 40(50.00) 9(37.50) 80(50.00) 2.142
Feeding of mineral mixture
  29(51.79) 34(42.50) 8(33.34) 71(44.38) 2.545
Preparation of hay & silage
  0(0) 0(0) 2(8.34) 2(1.25) 11.476**
Time of concentrate feeding
a At milking time 46(82.14) 71(88.75) 18(75.00) 135(84.38) 2.973
b Both at milking time & mixed with fodder 10(17.86) 9(11.25) 6(25.00) 25(15.63)
Concentrate feeding of advance pregnant cattle
  53(94.64) 70(87.50) 22(91.66) 145(90.63) 2.014
Concentrate feeding of young calf
  6 (10.71) 15(18.75) 5(20.84) 26(16.25) 1.998
Concentrate feeding of heifer
  44(78.57) 67(83.75) 18(75.00) 129(80.63) 1.137
 Quantity of concentrate fed to lactating cattle
a  Balance feeding 45(80.36) 60(75.00) 20(83.34) 125(78.13) 1.001
b  Imbalance feeding 11(19.64) 20(25.00) 4(16.66) 25(21.87)#

# Figure in parenthesis indicate horizontal percentage; *significant (p<0.05); ** significant (p<0.01)

The feeding of the animals governs the overall health and reproductive performance of the animals. In the current study, it was found that combined grazing and stall feeding was followed by 58.13 per cent of the respondents while 40.00 per cent adopted only stall feeding of their animals (Table 1).

Harvested/fallow field was used as grazing site by 45.63 per cent cattle keepers, while 10.63 per cent used common pasture land for grazing. Only 45.00 per cent of the respondents use to chaff the dry fodder before feeding (Table 1). Home prepared concentrate mixture was given by 61.25 per cent of the respondents in the study area. Practice of soaking and boiling concentrate mixture was followed by 88.13 per cent of cattle keepers before feeding. Only 50.00 and 44.38 per cent of the respondents fed common salt and mineral mixture, respectively. Preparation of hay and/or silage was practiced by only 1.25 per cent of the cattle keepers (Table 1). The findings of feeding in the present study are almost similar to that recorded by Garg et al. (2005), Kumar et al. (2006), Swaroop and Prasad (2007) and Rathore et al. (2010). Similar findings regarding cultivation of green fodder and its feeding have also been observed by Dhiman (1988), Garg et al. (2005), Swaroop and Prasad (2007) and Sinha et al. (2009). The findings about type of concentrate mixture in the present study are in accordance with the findings observed by Garg et al. (2005) and these findings are contrary to Singh et al. (2004).

The findings of common salt, mineral mixture feeding and preparation of hay and silage are in accordance with the results of Malik and Nagpaul (1998), Mudgal et al. (2003), Ganai et al. (2004), Singh et al. (2004), Garg et al. (2005), Kumar et al. (2006), Sinha et al. (2009), Dixit et al. (2010) and Rathore et al. (2010). The findings of concentrate feeding to pregnant cattle recorded in present study are in agreement with the reports of Rajendran and Prabhakaran (1992), Kumar et al. (2006) and Ramchandra (2012). Regarding quantity of concentrate feeding, the present findings agree well with earlier reports by Intodia (1988, 2001), Singh et al. (2004), Garg et al. (2005), Malik et al. (2005), Kumar et al. (2006) and Choudhary et al. (2017) respectively.


It is recommended on the observations of present study that cattle keepers should be motivated through training and demonstrations for balanced feeding and preparation of balanced concentrate mixture at home. Subsidies on mineral mixture and urea molasses mineral bricks should be provided to enhance use of these feed additives.


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