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Modifications of the application of soil erosion control technologies in subsistence agriculture

CU Okoye


Diffusion theory and research in the developing countries have not adequately examined the adaptive or coping strategies of small scale farmers to farm-level environmental degradation brought about by population pressure and agricultural intensification. Data gathered through personal interviews and participant observation with farmers in high density, highly erodible soil areas of Anambra State in South Eastern Nigeria are used to study the patterns of modification of the application of soil erosion control practices. It was found that of 23 soil erosion control practices identified in the study area, the ways 7 of them were applied by farmers had been significantly modified to cope with increasing levels of soil erosion, and that the erosion control measures used by the farmers addressed multiple objectives, including those goals that do not necessarily have to do with erosion control. It is suggested that research should concentrate on the 7 practices that have been modified by the farmers themselves in order to refine them further for reinjection into the farmers' production system. Also, extension should always recommend erosion control practices that have multiple objectives in order to increase their chances of being adopted by farmers.

Key words: Soil erosion, control technology

Agro-Science Vol.2(2) 2001: 62-69
AJOL African Journals Online