Improved livestock husbandry innovation in Serengeti Mara Ecosystem | Livestock and Fisheries Management (Livestock Feeds)

Livestock farming through pastoralism has been an integral part ofthe communities in the Serengeti Mara Ecosystem (SME). However, the pastoralistsin SME only keep indigenous breeds, which are of low quality. They also use avery poor pastoral husbandry system. Livestock farming in SME can be improvedthrough species choice, density and stocking rates, technical assistance (toimprove productivity and incomes), genetic improvement of Read more..

Description of the technology or innovation

Livestock farming through pastoralism has been an integral part ofthe communities in the Serengeti Mara Ecosystem (SME). However, the pastoralistsin SME only keep indigenous breeds, which are of low quality. They also use avery poor pastoral husbandry system. Livestock farming in SME can be improvedthrough species choice, density and stocking rates, technical assistance (toimprove productivity and incomes), genetic improvement of the herd, improvementof pastures and grazing areas, enhancing availability of cheap inputs andselling off animals during drought periods. Predation and infrastructure damagefrom wild animals can be limited through fencing. Providing livestock keeperswith alternative and more productive feed and fodder sources during periods ofchronic drought could prove a faster and more effective way to reduce thenumber of animals depending entirely on natural pastures. Hay can be cut duringthe wet season and stored for use during the dry season. This approach willprevent livestock starvation during the dry season, thus improving the animal’scondition, productivity and ultimately improve human livelihoods.

Assessment/reflection on utilization, dissemination & scaling out or up approaches used

The validation process used participatory tools and techniquesdeveloped through stakeholder consultations. The beneficiaries of thetechnology are local communities, agricultural officers, the milk industry,meat industry and the skins and hides industry.

Current situation and future scaling up

This range management practice proposes commendable improvementsin the way livestock enterprises are run in the SME. While improving thelivestock enterprise may benefit most gender categories, it could as wellcreate added responsibilities and work load for women and children. With regardto climate, improved pastures (drought tolerant) will enhance resilience todrought thus guaranteeing adequate supplies of livestock feed. This practicethus enhances resilience of livestock enterprises in the face of climatechange. The practice indirectly safeguards households from periodic foodinsecurity that comes along with seasonal scarcity of pastures for livestock,and can be highly impactful for livestock farmers in drought prone regions.

Economic Considerations

Integration of improved livestock husbandry practices can improveproductivity, resulting in increased incomes for farmers.

Gender considerations

The technology is gender sensitive sincelivestock husbandry is practised by both male and female farmers.


Additional information

Figure 1: Zebu herd inMasai Mara ecosystem.