Assessment of beef cattle fattening practices and its challenges in and around Mekelle, Tigray, Ethiopia

  • Teklehaymanot Gebremichael
  • Tsegay Tkue Gebrewahd
  • Niraj Kumar
Keywords: Beef cattle, Challenges, Fattening, Mekelle


A cross sectional study was conducted from April to June, 2016 with the objective of assessing the beef cattle fattening practices and its challenges in and around Mekelle. Accordingly, data was collected from all (N=108) beef cattle fatteners in the study area, by face-to-face interview using a pretested structured and semi-structured questionnaires. Moreover, participatory group focused discussion and personal observation were among the tools used to collect relevant data for this study. Based on the results of the current study, all of the interviewed farmers use male animals for fattening purpose. The farmers use different criteria to select the best animals to be fattened, and age, body size and body condition status of the animals are among the major ones. Regarding the housing condition of the animals to be fattened, 61.1% of the fattening houses had complete roof and side walls to protect the animals from predators and being exposed to rain and sun light. On the other hand, 38.9% of the fattening houses were constructed without roof, but fenced with different locally available fencing materials, such as wood, thorny plants and stones. Almost all (97.2%) of the fattening houses’ floors were soil type without drainage system. The beef cattle fattening in the study area is challenged by different constraints, such as shortage of feed (100%), shortage of land (78.7%), market problem (75.9%), and diseases (58.3%). Therefore, it is very important to solve these constraints to enhance production and productivity of the beef cattle, and thereby improve the livelihood of the farmers in the study area.

Keywords: Beef cattle; Challenges; Fattening; Mekelle


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2221-5034
print ISSN: 1683-6324