Assessment of the Effects of Emerging Grazing Policies on Land Degradation in Nigeria
This study examines the effects of the emerging grazing policies on land degradation in Nigeria using soil, vegetation and sustainability as variables for the assessment. Data was acquired and analyzed and the results show that conflicts between farmers and herders occur all over Nigeria. The consequences of these affect lives, properties and the environment. The country now has approximately 210 persons and 180 grazing animals per kilometer square of land and 15,000 persons and 12,500 grazing animals per kilometer square of water. With the population of both man and grazing animals increasing at very high rates, the need for both food and fodder is becoming more desperate. This impact negatively on the soil, vegetation and water when there is intensive grazing without proper conservation plans in place. This study therefore, suggests the adoption of the emerging grazing policies, but with the modification that will build in agroforestry system of agriculture to suit each ecological zone. This is with a view to solving socio-economic problems of farmers and herders, and also to protect the environment from degradation.
Key words: Grazing reserve, Land degradation, Livestock production, Ranching, Sustainability.