Peter Coppolillo; Deana Clifford; Amy Dickman; Michel Masozera; Mariam Nguvava; Rudovick Kazwala; Jon Erickson; Jonna Mazet
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Livestock-Climate Change CRSP, University of California- Davis
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Abstract: In sub-Saharan Africa, livestock deaths due to disease have large impacts on household income and nutrition. As part of the larger Health for Animals and Livelihood Improvement (HALI) project assessing the impact of zoonotic disease and water scarcity on rural livelihoods, the authors examined the association between landscape factors and livestock deaths attributed to disease in pastoralist households living near Ruaha National Park, Tanzania. Preliminary results suggest that households located farther from the center of the village and farther from water sources suffered greater livestock losses due to disease. Livestock disease losses were greater in Pawaga than in Idodi Division, underscoring the importance of localized factors that may influence disease. The presence of wildlife and close proximity to roads were not associated with livestock disease losses. However, that is not to say the perception of disease from wildlife is not important, nor can it be said that interactions in the opposite direction (from livestock to wildlife) are not important. These assessments will require further investigation, which is currently underway. Study data also support the importance of water availability for livestock health and productivity. In conclusion, both local and regional strategies to increase livestock productivity should consider within-village disease variation and ensure that more remote households have access to extension and veterinary services.