Animal production is defined as an aspect of agriculture which in itself is the science and art of production crop, animal and fibre products for human use. Just as in wider agricultural activities, animal production depends on art (or traditional) and scientific principles in practice and theory.
Currents level of progress has indicated that scientific applications tend to be more amenable to meet present and future targets for animal product in many food and agriculture organization .
The demand and usefulness of animal product for human health and survival economic and industrial growth as well as provision of other social services are ever increasing.
Yet, challenges and constraints limiting Nigeria and other developing nations in fulfilling these demand for animal product are manifest.
Perhaps, solutions lie in developing strategies around value and attitudinal orientation of the majority of producers, selection and upgrading of genetic pool for various desirable traits, and exploitation of the farming systems and feed resources for greater animal productivity while curtailing incidence of animal pest and diseases through a virile animal health management system.
Some strategies for purposeful development of the livestock industry (animal production) in Nigeria are suggested as follows:
(1) Careful selection of local breeding stock from breed and individual records.
(2) National upgrading and breeding programs involving exotic and local breeds even in urban farming , thereby mass producing the heterzygous offspring for production purposes.
(3) Careful exploration of various farming systems even in the subsistence farming system to ensure availability of feed-stuff throughout the year and intensification agricultural production system
(4) Feed quality improvement through deliberate supplementation and range exploitation to meet daily requirements for various nutrients.
(5) Exploitation of the biological abilities of the stock to derive maximally from the availability feed-stuff ( agfood ) in agribusiness .
(6) Establishment of a responsive and resilient animal health system on agri that is capable of quick intervention, continuous and effective management of animal diseases and their predisposing agents and condition to enable us achieve a sustainable agriculture ,
Summary / Conclusion
Animal production both in concept and practice is rooted in scientific principles in the agriculture department even in dbt agriculture in India upon which it has made substantial growth and development.
The traditional methods of production popularly known as organic farming , though still persistent and possibly played some roles in the past, are gradually fading out.
The significance of livestock production is daily increasing with greater implications for human survival, economic and social advancement in the face of challenging constraints that need pro-active efforts to resolve.
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