Magnitude of foetal wastage and the monetary losses in sheep and goats slaughtered in Morogoro selected slaughter facilities, Morogoro Tanzania
Foetal wastage in slaughter animals not only causes a loss to farmers and livestock traders, it's against animal welfare still information on the magnitude of slaughter of pregnant goats and sheep is scarce. This study evaluated the level of fetal wastage in goats and sheep slaughtered at Morogoro slaughterhouse and Mkongeni slaughter slab in Mvomero district between December 2016 and January 2017. Of the 351 goats slaughtered, 80.1% were female and 40.2% of them were pregnant. Likewise, 97 sheep were slaughtered, 80.4% were female of which 57.7% were pregnant. Of all the fetuses (n=163) recovered, 61.5% had ≥2 months of age and 61 (37.4%) were female. Four out of 113 (3.5%) of pregnant does and 1/45 (2.2%) of pregnant ewes had twins. A loss of 951,000 Tanzania shillings was calculated due to fetal wastage in 30 days. The results of this study demonstrate that there is significant flock wastage and losses which limits availability of animal protein to the people in Morogoro and elsewhere in Tanzania. It is therefore recommended that appropriate measures including legislation enforcement, capacity building on pregnant diagnosis for slaughter facilities staff be put in place to control the slaughter of pregnant stock. Stock owners and traders should be sensitized on the implication on losses of genetic materials and sustainability of meat production associated with continued slaughtering of pregnant animals.
Key words: sheep, goats, foetal wastage, slaughter facility, monetary loss