Adapting Livestock Production System to Climate Change: Assessing Feed, Nutrition, and Animal Health
Durga D. Poudel
Type of Document:
Livestock-Climate Change CRSP, Colorado State University
Date of Publication:
Place of Publication:
Fort Collins, CO
Abstract: Livestock production systems in Nepal are experiencing a significant downturn as critical resources such as water, soil, forests, agricultural productivity and farm labor are affected by rapid land use changes and climate change impacts. To ensure livestock climate change adaptation and strengthen livestock production systems, it is critical to understand and enhance feed, nutrition, and animal health. As a part of a larger livestock production system project, we started a detailed study on the status of feed, nutrition, and animal health in the Thulokhola watershed in Nuwakot district of Nepal in August 2011. We kept records on livestock production and the available food supply; analyzed fodder and feed samples; assessed body condition and fecal photos; and tested fecal samples for parasites. Our analyses indicated that most cows were consuming low quality fodder, but their average body condition was reasonably good. More than half of the local livestock were infected with internal parasites. These results clearly indicate that enhancing livestock feed and nutrition, as well as veterinary care, is necessary in order to strengthen livestock production systems in Nepal.