Plant Nutrients: Their Roles and Sources in Plant Growth

Plant Growth

For proper plant growth, a regular supply of plant nutrients especially the essential ones, is necessary. Plants absorb a large number of elements from the soil, air and water during their growth period, but not all of these are essential. Only 16 elements have been found to be essential for all plants and four others have been found to be essential for some plants. Essential Elements for Plant Growth For element to be so classified, it has to fulfill the following criteria:  A deficiency of the element makes it impossible…

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Methods of Genetic Improvement in Livestock Breeding

Methods of Genetic Improvement in Livestock Breeding

The farmer has two main ways in which he can attempt to raise the performance of the animals. He can through their environment or try change their genetic make-up in other to increase their genetic potential. The various traits or characteristics of a pig for example are genetically controlled and inherited through genes, which contain the basic hereditary material. These genes can be manipulated to achieve genetic improvement by either increasing the frequency of favorable genes or combinations of genes by selection, or by introducing new genes into the population…

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Semi-intensive System of Livestock Production

Semi-Intensive System of Livestock Production

Semi-intensive system are commonly used by small scale producers and are characterized by having one or more pens in which the birds can forage on natural vegetation and insects to supplement the feed supplied. It is desirable to provide at least two runs for alternating use to avoid build up of disease and parasites. As may be observed in the foregoing, varieties of subsystems have been adopted to take advantage of low-cost of the extensive system and the high productivity of the intensive as circumstances may dictate under different operation…

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Some Inherited Defects to be Avoided in Livestock Breeding

Some Inherited Defects to be Avoided in Livestock Breeding

There are many anatomical defects for example in pig which can affect performance. The majority of these are genetic in origin and therefore likely to be inherited from generation to generation. Tests are conducted to detect defects. These defects may be simple (i.e. controlled by one pair of genes) or complex (controlled by several pairs of genes). At the end of the test, the feed conversion efficiency is calculated, and the fat thickness is measure by an ultrasonic machine. Pigs are assessed on the basis of an index derived from…

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Cross Breeding and Artificial Insemination in Livestock Breeding

Cross Breeding and Artificial Insemination in Livestock Breeding

In the previous section, methods of pig improvement have been based on selection within breed. There is, however, another means by which the producer can attempt to genetically improve the performance. This involves cross-breeding which is the: Exploitation of the phenomenon of heterosis, which occurs when two breed, which are genetically different, are crossed. If the cross-bred individual shows an improvement in performance above the mean of both parents it is said to exhibit hybrid- vigor or the ability to combine in one or more individuals the desirable characteristics of…

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Improvement Programs in Livestock Breeding

Importance of Feeding Balanced Ration to your Animals

As an example of how testing and selection procedures can be integrated into a genetic improvement program, the national pig improvement program in Zimbabwe is described. This program is based on a pyramidal structure a small number of registered nucleus breeders assessed to be the herds genetically in the country, send their pigs to a central performance- test station. Approved boars and gilts pass out to multiplication herds, assessed to be the next rung down in terms of genetic merit, where their progeny is performance tested on the farm. Animal…

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MonoCulture: Types, Advantages and Disadvantages

MonoCulture: Types, Advantages and Disadvantages

This is the practice of incessantly cultivating the same type of crop on the same piece of land year after year. For example sugar cane farming in Bachita, Nigeria Planting monoculture crops may seem an easy method of gardening but, in fact, the adverse effects of monocropping can lead to a number of issues down the road. Let’s learn more about these effects and the monoculture problems that may result. What is Monocropping? Many farmers plant only one crop in the same place year after year. This is what is…

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Techniques and Processors for Testing performance in Livestock Breeding

Techniques and Processors for Testing performance in Livestock Breeding

There are different methods or techniques used for testing the performance of animals in livestock breeding and below are the techniques and processors used for testing performance in livestock breeding: 1) Progeny-Testing in Livestock Breeding As the boar has a relatively large influence on the characteristics which the next generation of a pig herd will inherit, testing systems have tended to concentrate on improvement of boars. Boar progeny-testing systems have been in operation throughout the world for a long time and are based on measuring the relative merit of a…

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Integrated Livestock Production System

Integrated Livestock Production System

A good number of production practices have evolved which entail integration of one system of livestock production with another agriculture practice. Most intensification practices of this nature are still on trail or at experimental stage, while a few cases are actually in practice. Livestock production intensification practices often arise from constraints of increasing pressure of urbanization, complementary between system in terms of benefit or resource sharing, disposal of waste or manure, legislation etc. Read Also: Indirect Effects of Climate on Animal Production An example of such intensification of livestock production…

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Intensive System of Livestock Production

Intensive System of Livestock Production

The intensive system of livestock production refers to management practice where animals are confined and by implication are not allowed to forage or fend for themselves under similar practice; a fenced land area may be designated as grazing area or paddock, usually adjacent to animal pens. This method include the intensive system of livestock production of livestock animals like: Sheep (merino sheep, dorper sheep, etc.), Cattle (highland cattle, angus cattle, holstein friesian cattle, brahman cattle, jersey cattle, beef cattle, charolais cattle, Goats like the boer goat, Nigerian dwarf goat, angora…

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