Farm animals are a vital part of agriculture and are an essential resource for many countries around the world.
These animals play a significant role in providing food, clothing, and other necessary products that people rely on for their daily lives.
Cattle are one of the most common types of farm animals. They are raised for their meat, milk, and hides. Beef cattle, which are raised for meat, are typically kept on large feedlots, while dairy cattle are kept on dairy farms where they are milked regularly.
Cattle also produce manure, which is used as fertilizer for crops.
Pigs are another common farm animal. They are raised for their meat, and pork is a staple in many cuisines around the world. Pigs are typically kept in large barns and are fed a diet of grains and soybeans.
They also produce manure, which is used as fertilizer.
Sheep are raised for their meat, wool, and milk. They are typically kept on grazing land and are fed a diet of grass and hay. Wool from sheep is used to make clothing and other textiles.
Sheep milk is also used to make cheese and other dairy products.
Chickens are raised for their meat and eggs. They are typically kept in large barns or in free-range environments, where they are able to move around and forage for food.
Eggs from chickens are a staple in many households, and chicken meat is used in a wide variety of dishes.
Goats are raised for their meat, milk, and hides. They are typically kept on grazing land and are fed a diet of grass and hay. Goat milk is used to make cheese and other dairy products, and goat meat is used in many cuisines around the world.
Farm animals play a critical role in providing food and other essential products. They are an important resource for many countries, particularly those in developing regions.
However, it is important to treat farm animals with care and respect. They should be provided with adequate food, water, and shelter, and should be treated humanely at all times.
In conclusion, farm animals are an essential part of agriculture and provide many benefits to people around the world.
They are raised for their meat, milk, wool, and other products, and play a vital role in food security. It is important to treat these animals with care and respect and to ensure that they are raised in humane conditions.
Classification of farm animals
Farm animals can be classified into different categories based on various factors such as their use, behaviour, and physical characteristics. Here are some common classifications:
These classifications are not mutually exclusive, and some animals may belong to multiple categories.
(d) Goat breeding: Goats mature at a very early age. It is advisable that both the male and .female should reach the age of nine months and twelve to eighteen months respectively before being bred.
Oestros Cycle: 21-28 days. Heat period: 24-48 hours.
Since ovulation (shedding of the ova) occurs towards the end i heat, the best time to mate the doe is about 12 hours before the end of heat. The signs of heat include:
- bleating (irritating noise-making)
- riding other goats
- tail shaking
- swollen and reddened vulva
- tendency to urinate frequently
Gestation period: 5 months or 150 days.
Goats reared under this system are very destructive as they feed on almost all economic plants and even human food.
- Intensive system: In this system, the goats are continuously housed. Feed and water are provided for them in the pens. The houses provide protection against environmental hazards and predators. The destructive aspect of goats is also controlled.
The pens, water troughs and feeding devices are cleaned regularly to ensure good hygiene. Deworming and spraying against parasites are common practices with goats reared under the intensive systems of management, i mats do well under this system of rearing.
- Semi-intensive system: This involves the rearing of goats in pastures. The goats are rotated from the pasture. This is called controlled grazing. Some pens are provided in the pasture land. It combines the advantages of intensive system management.
Tethering is generally part of the semi-intensive method of goat keeping since fences are expensive. Tethering involves tying the utility rope to a stake or tree.
They feed from that stand. The areas they can breed depend on the length of the rope.
It is better to tether goats in small huts with roofs or under tree shades where forage crops are brought to them in order to avoid harsh environmental conditions. This system of management is cheap.
IMPORTANCE OF FARM ANIMALS
Farm animals are of great importance for many reasons, including:
Food production: Farm animals are a major source of food, including meat, milk, eggs, and other animal products, which provide essential nutrients such as protein, iron, and calcium.
Agricultural productivity: Farm animals such as cows, horses, and oxen are used for plowing fields, pulling carts, and transporting crops, which helps farmers increase productivity.
Fertilizer production: Manure from farm animals can be used as a natural fertilizer to enrich the soil and improve crop yields.
Economic benefits: Farm animals provide a source of income for farmers and support the local economy through the sale of animal products and related industries such as meat processing and dairy production.
Cultural significance: Farm animals have played an important role in human societies for centuries and are often valued as part of cultural traditions and practices.
Ecological importance: Some farm animals, such as chickens and pigs, can be raised in a sustainable manner, providing a natural means of pest control and soil management.
Overall, farm animals are an important part of our agricultural, economic, cultural, and ecological systems, and their well-being and welfare should be a top priority for farmers and society as a whole.
(b) Management practices in Rabbits
(i) Housing: Rabbits are kept in cages called hutches. It is essential that the hutches are protected from rain and sunlight. Each adult rabbit should have its own hutch, which should be 60cm high 75cm deep and 1 ½ – 2m long.
The cage should dry and self-cleaning. The bottom of the cage should be made of wire mesh so that the faeces and urine can drop to the ground.
Also, the cages should stand on legs and the total height of each should be waist high. It is difficult to keep cages with solid bottoms dry. Wet cages encourage the breeding of flies and coccidiosis.
A three-unit cage is always recommended, that is, that can hold three adult rabbits; two does (female rabbit) and a buck (male rabbit).
The walls of the hutch can be made of split bamboo while the roof is made in such a way mil rain from tickling through. All cages must stand in filled with water to keep off ants.
Kindling is the act of giving birth to the young. A nest should be placed in the hutch about 24 days after it has been mated.
If it kindles on the wire floor the litter (grown young ones born at the same time) may perish. No strong bedding is to be placed in the cage. The cage must be the doe that will pull out enough hair from her belly to cover the litter.
As each infant is delivered, the doe licks it. After kindling, the litter should be inspected and dead or deformed removed. The cans on which the hutch is standing must be with water to prevent ants from entering to kill the young Rabbits are nervous animals and are more nervous during kindling periods.
Therefore, keep the doe as quiet as possible during this period, and keep off all-natural enemies like do cats. Keep people and children away from her hutch.
Avoid the doe as much as possible on the day before and after kindling because excitement also causes abortion.
Some doe kill their young ones. This may be a sign of feeding. Some kill for no purpose. Such doe should be called.