Economic Evaluation of Small ruminant Production among Small holder Farmers in Zamfara State
AbstractA survey was conducted in three Local Government Areas of Zamfara State to study the economic advantages of keeping small ruminants among smallholder farmers.. A total of 120 smallholder farmers were randomly selected for the study and each of them was verbally interviewed using
structured questionnaires. Result from the statistical analysis shows that the highest average farm size of 1.97 ±0.180ha was observed in Maradun. The highest average crop income was N 85548±11735.The highest average livestock income was N100733±11858. Increasing livestock
number by one animal was predicted to increase livestock income by N 1126. Increasing the crop yield by one bag was predicted to increase the livestock income by N1657. The gross margin of livestock was higher (N51260) than that of crops (N 44,110) in all locations. Length of hind legs of Uda sheep was found to significantly correlate with the height at withers (r = 0.954; p<0.001). Length of hind legs of Red Sokoto goats correlated significantly with length of fore leg (r = 0.966; p<0.001). The highest average body weight of sheep 45.38kg was observed in Bakura Local Government. However, increasing height at withers and body length of Red Sokoto goats by 1cm was predicted to significantly decrease weight of goats by 0.36kg and 0.27 kg respectively. It was therefore concluded
that small ruminant production is a profitable venture among smallholder farmers in Zamfara state and should therefore be encouraged for sustainable livelihoods in Zamfara state.