Prevalence, farmers’ knowledge and management of mange in small ruminants in rural household communities of Ejisujuaben municipality, Ghana

  • T Opoku-Agyemang
  • M Dufie
  • B O Emikpe
  • S G Bonnah
  • R D Folitse
Keywords: Ghana, mange, management, prevalence, Sheep and goats, small-scale farmer.

Abstract

The current study investigated, on the basis of farm and clinical records, the prevalence, knowledge of farmers and methods of management of mange in sixty small-scale sheep and goat farms in the rural areas of Ejisu-Juaben Municipality in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Data was compiled with employment of descriptive statistics based on farm visit records and administration of specifically-structured questionnaires to farmers and veterinary service personnel. The study showed that small-scale sheep and goat breeding is mostly a subsistence occupation, engaged predominantly by males and senior citizens of over 40 years. According to the study, majority of the rural small-scale farmers had basic or no formal education, with scanty knowledge about mange as a disease condition. The results revealed a trend of inadequate housing and management practices, with no provision for isolation and separation of afflicted animals from healthy ones. A few of the farms investigated has facilities to handle an outbreak. The study indicated a higher incidence of mange in goats; and also revealed that even as goats were mostly afflicted with demodectic mange, the predominant causative mite in the case of sheep mange was sarcoptes spp. It showed that farmers were more accurate in identifying mange in sheep; which is evidenced by a higher rate of confirmation of suspected mange cases in sheep as compared with goats. The study also confirmed methods of “in-house” management of mange as mostly inappropriate. This study showed that failure to identify and register cases of mange could be attributed to the farmers’ inadequate knowledge on the causes and impact of the disease. It is, therefore, recommended that regular extension education programmes on prophylaxis, control and prevention of mange in sheep and goats should be available to small-scale farmers in rural areas.

Keywords: Ghana, mange, management, prevalence, Sheep and goats, small-scale farmer.

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eISSN: 0378-9721