Assessment of commercial beef cattle fattening practices and performance in East Shoa Zone
Keywords:Beef cattle, Commercial, Performance
The study was conducted in Adama, Lome and Adami-Tulu districts of East Shoa Zone of Oromia Regional State to assess commercial fattening practices, and to evaluate performance of commercial fattening. Multistage sampling procedure was employed for the survey study. The questionnaire based formal survey was conducted using semi structured questioners by interviewing a total of 45 feedlot operators purposively selected from the three districts and both quantitative and qualitative data on beef cattle fattening systems were obtained. For the monitoring work nine farms among those used for interview were selected for the purpose of monitoring animals’ performance during fattening period. Eight Animals from each farm were randomly selected from the farms based on age, initial body weight and body condition. The study revealed that the major criteria for selecting animals to purchase for feedlot fattening includes breed type, physical appearance and/or frame size, age, health and initial price body condition, coat color, horn size were the top priority and major breeds used was Boran breeds with an age between 3-6 years old. The feed resources used by commercial cattle fattening include crop residues and agro-industrial by products feeds. The average total weight gain and average daily weight gain of animals recorded in 90 days of fattening was significantly higher (P<0.05) for large (97.7±1.16; 1.09±0.01) and medium (97.58±1.16; 1.09±0.01) as compared to small scale (91.04±1.169 kg; 1.01±0.01kg) commercial fattening. It is concluded that the dependence on only Borana breed may affect the efficiency of the fattening industry by creating supply shortage and also it depletes the breed population. Moreover, the Limited feed availability, high price of supplementary feed, market fluctuation of fattened cattle, disease out breaks, and water shortage are the most challenges faced by the sectors and needs to be addressed in the study area.
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