African Journal of Range and Forage Science

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Efforts to improve Zimbabwe communal grazing areas: a review

Bruce Tavirimirwa, Emmanuel Manzungu, Soul Washaya, Sharai Ncube, Shadreck Ncube, Clarice Mudzengi, Richard Mwembe


The management of rangelands over the past decade in Zimbabwe has been on the decline. This has resulted in degraded and depleted communal rangelands. A number of recommendations by various government departments, researchers and non-governmental organisations have been implemented. These focused on improving communal grazing areas throughout the country. Notable examples include the livestock destocking policy, introduction of grazing schemes, improved forage grasses, veld legume reinforcement and agro-forestry technology. However, success in improving communal grazing areas has been limited, with forage productivity in communal areas declining, soils still eroding, as well as loss of flora and fauna diversity. The objectives of this paper are to review factors limiting efforts to improve communal grazing areas, constraints to adoption of rangeland technologies necessary to achieve desired plant community for livestock production, and present recommendations to overcome the challenges. The review concludes that there has been limited farmer participation in efforts to improve communal grazing areas and livestock productivity, thus the low adoption of technologies to improve the grazing areas. It is therefore recommended to use participatory approach methodologies to assist communal livestock farmers to improve their grazing areas.

Keywords: adoption, challenges, rangeland improvement technologies
AJOL African Journals Online