- Ever since the beginning of civilisation, humans have depended on animals for many requirements, such as that of food (milk, meat and egg), clothing (hide or wool), labour (pulling, carrying the load) and security etc. Humans have consistently tried to improve the breeds of domesticated animals to make them more useful for them.
- The branch of agricultural science, which deals with the study of various breeds of domesticated animals and their management for obtaining better products and services from them is known as Animal Husbandry. The term husbandry derives from the word “husband” which means ‘one who takes care’.
- The rearing of animals for specific purposes is called domestication and animals are called domesticated animals. When animal husbandry incorporates the study of proper utilisation of economically important domestic animals, it is called Livestock Management. Livestock is used for different purposes. Cattles like cow and buffalo provide milk. Goats provide milk, meat, hair and skin. Sheep, poultry and pigs also provide meat. Horses, camels, donkeys are the beasts of burdens, they are used for carrying load and transport. Some insects are the sources of wax and honey.
- Animal husbandry provides high yielding and high breeding livestock. It gives supplementary income to farmers and tribals. It has importance in national income.
- Livestock management of farm management includes selection of high yielding breeds, their food requirements, supply of adequate nutrient sources, cleanliness of en the ironment, maintenance of health and veterinary supervision, vaccination, high yield cross-breed development, preservation and production of corresponding products, distribution and marketing.
Categories of Animals:
- The animals which breed better where they are free than they do when they are captivated are called wild animals. Example Lion, Tiger, Rhinoceros, Deer etc.
- They have no common use for humans.
- The animals, which are caught from the wild and trained to be useful to humans in some way are called tamed animals. Examples: Elephant, Chimpanzee, Gorilla, Yak etc.
- The animals which are of use at home and are easily bred and looked after by humans are called domesticated animals. Examples: dog, horse, cow, sheep, buffalo, fowl etc.
Classification of Domesticated Animals:
- Milk giving animals. e.g. Cattle, buffalo, goat, sheep etc.
- Draught animals (used for load). e.g. Bullock, horse, donkey, mule, camel, elephant, yak etc.
- Fibre, hide and skin yielding animals. e.g. Sheep, goat, cattle, buffalo, camel
- Meat and egg yielding animals. e.g. fowl (hen) and duck, goat, buffalo, pig etc.
- The main aim of dairy management is to deal with processes and systems that increase yield and improve quality of milk. Bullocks are used for ploughing, harrowing, threshing, transport and drawing water from well. They provide hides, horns and hooves and other byproducts. Their dungs are used in Gober gas plants for biogas generation and manure.
- India is the world’s largest producer of milk. The majority of the milk consumed is also in liquid form in India. In India cattle like cow and buffalo primarily provide milk which is a perfect diet and important source of nutrients and proteins. Production of processed milk products is very less compared to developed countries. The National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) is the main agency behind the cooperative movement in India. India is now seeking joint ventures and financial participation from the private sector including foreign investment for production of milk and milk products in India.
Breeds of Cattle:
- Lactation Period is the period of milk production between the birth of a young one and the next pregnancy and it usually lasts about 300 days.
- A breed is a group of one species of animals, which have the same descent and are similar in body shape, size and structure. There are three categories of breeds.
- India possesses 27 good breeds of cattle and seven breeds of buffaloes. They differ from each other on the basis of body colours, horns and foreheads. They are well-known world over for their quality of hardiness, endurance and resistance to tropical diseases.
- On the basis of utility, they are classified into three types.
- Milch Breeds: They give higher milk production. e.g. Gir, Sahiwal, Red Sindhi, Deoni
- Draught Breeds: They have a higher capacity of work. e.g. Amruthmahal, Malvi, Nageri, Hallikar, Siri, Khillari and Kangayam
- General Utility Breeds: They give more milk and do have a higher capacity for work. e.g. Hariana, Ongole, Kankrej, Tharparkar
- Holstein-Friesion is American breed which is the largest producer of milk per lactation. It has less percentage of fat. Brown Swiss breed is raised in Switzerland it has a high content of minerals and lactose and its milk is used for making cheese. Jersey is a breed which is low milk producing breed but it has more fat content. Red Dane breed from a cold region of Europe is more milk producing breed.
- Gir, Sahiwal, Red Sindhi, Thararkar, Kankrej etc. are some high yielding varieties of Indian cattle.
- Hilstein, Friesian, Jersey, Swiss etc. are some of the high yielding varieties that have been imported from abroad and reared widely in India.
- Some improved breeds have been developed by making a cross between two desired breeds. A cross between Sahiwal and Friesian varieties has been named as Friewal, Karan Swiss is another improved breed for milk production in large quantities.
Some Indian Breeds of Cow and Their Distributions:
- Gir (Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra)
- Red Sindhi (Andhra Pradesh, all part of world including India and Pakistan)
- Sahiwal (Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat)
- Kankrej (Gujarat)
- Tharparkar (Rajasthan)
- Mewati (Rajasthan)
- Ongole (Andhra Pradesh)
- Hariana (Gujarat, Rajasthan)
- Hallikar (South India)
- Kangayam (Tamilnadu)
- Murrah (Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh)
Some Indian Breeds of Buffalo and Their Distributions:
- Murrah (Haryana, Punjab)
- Bhadawari (Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh)
- Jaffarabadi (Gujarat)
- Surti (Gujarat)
- Mehsana (Cross between Murrah and Surti) Gujarat
- Nagpuri (Maharashtra)
- Nill Ravi (Punjab)
- Porlakmedi (Orissa)
- The cattle feed consists of two components a) roughage and b) concentrates.
- The main feed of cows and buffaloes are grass but this does not provide them all the nourishment. The roughage (Silage) is fibrous food containing a large amount of fibres such as hay fodder, leguminous plants-soybeans, peas and cereals like maize, jowar etc. and concentrates are grains, oil cakes and seeds, mineral salts and vitamins, cereal like bajra, gram, rice polish, etc. Roughage has less nutritive value while concentrates are rich in nutrients.
- The diet of animals should be balanced and its vary with the age, state, health, breed type etc.
Cattle Farm Management:
- Cattles are to be well looked after. Quantity and quality of cattle feed should be maintained.
- Cleanliness and hygiene of cattle, handlers, milk and milk products should be maintained. Cleanliness and hygiene should be maintained during storage and transport of milk and mil products.
- The process should be mechanised to avoid direct contact with handlers.
- The shed must be clean, spacious with adequate facilities for feeding, watering and light.
- Identification of health problems, diseases, and rectification by veterinary doctors is mandatory.
- Milk, as drawn from the animals, is known as full cream milk. When the cream is separated and the remaining milk is called toned milk. This milk contains no fat and is known as skimmed milk. On the basis of fat contents the classification of various milk product is as follows:
- It is prepared by churning milk, the fat comes on the top which is separated by draining out the liquid. It is known as cream with 10-70% fat contents.
- Milk is converted to curd due to bacterial activities.
- It is the left over liquid after removal of butter.
- After heating butter, the water evaporates and fat contents are almost 100%.
- Milk is concentrated by removing water contents with or without adding sugar. It has 31% milk solids with 9% fats.
- It is the powdered form of milk.
- It is coagulated milk protein-casein with fat and water.
- A desiccated milk product prepared by evaporating water contents and reducing the bulk to about 70-75%.
Cattle dung is mainly used to make dung cakes for burning as fuels. It is used mainly in villages of India. The farmers also use cattle dung to produce biogas and the leftover residue as manure.