Species contribution as source of meat and their foetal wastage in Taraba State, Nigeria
By Terzungwe Ahemen and Danjuma Zahraddeen
The study was carried out at the Wukari and Jalingo main abattoirs in Taraba State, Nigeria to investigate the contribution of various livestock species as sources of meat and their foetal wastage. A daily visit was paid to these abattoirs to record the total number of animals slaughtered as influenced by species, sex and pregnant females, which lasted over a period of four months (April-July). The data were subjected to analysis of variance and simple descriptive statistics to calculate means and percentages. The results showed that there were significant (P<0.05) differences with respect to the total number slaughtered, number of males and females as well as incidence of foetal wastage (slaughter of pregnant females) among the three species studied in the two abattoirs. The results also revealed that the goat species had the highest (58.0%) contribution, followed by cattle (29.8%) and sheep (12.2%) in terms of their numerical number. There was an established pattern of marketing where large volume of these livestock, especially goats were disposed off during the on set of rains (April to June). Based on these results, it can be concluded that the goat meat/chevon is more cherished in the locality as compared to beef and mutton. Generally, prospect of livestock production is at stake in the area considering the high incidence rate (4.58-17.35%) of slaughtering pregnant females in the name of meat production and supply to the populace. It is therefore suggested that the growing practice of indiscriminate slaughtering of these pregnant animals be check-mated in order to enhance their productivity and to brighten the future of livestock industry in the country.
Key words: livestock, meat supply, foetal wastage.
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