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Nigerian Journal of Animal Production

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The grazing pattern of Muturu cattle under range system

B.O. Nweze

Abstract


Eighty Muturu cattle were grazed on rangeland, twice daily for two years to determine their grazing pattern. Twenty bulls and cows each between two to four years and forty calves between one to three months were used. The field grazing time (FGT), active grazing time (GT) and grazing travel time (GTT) were monitored. The density of the grazing area was also determined. The result showed that as the body increase, GT increased significantly, while travel distance (TD) decreased. The body weight (BW) correlated positively with GT, with expression BW = 39.14 + 11.31Gt and BW = 7.12 + 8.76Gt for morning and afternoon respectively. The grazing time (GT) increased while TD decreased with increase in forage density. However, GT and TD decreased significantly at higher density with D+326.2 + 114Gt, r =4.7 and D=203.15 + 156GT,r= 3.2 for morning and afternoon respectively. The results showed that TD was highest when the forage species are scarce (Jan and Feb in South East, Nigeria). The grazing pattern of Muturu cattle was affected by the age of animal, forage availability and temperature of the day.
Keywords: Grazing time, grazing travel time, forage density, muturu cattle



http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/njap.v30i1.3314
AJOL African Journals Online