As another drought bites the Horn, 12 million face food shortages in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia
Camels / Cattle / Drought / Drylands / East Africa / Ethiopia / Food Security / Goats / Kenya / Livelihoods / News clipping / Nutrition / Pastoralism / Sheep / Small Ruminants / Somalia / South Sudan / Uganda / Vulnerability

As another drought bites the Horn, 12 million face food shortages in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia

With as little as one-quarter of expected rainfall received, widespread drought conditions in the Horn of Africa have intensified since the failure of the October–December rains, FAO said. Areas of greatest concern cover much of Somalia, northeast and coastal Kenya, southeast Ethiopia as well as the Afar region still to recover from El Niño induced drought of 2015/16, and South Sudan, which faces a serious food crisis due to protracted insecurity. Continue reading

Livestock are ‘the future of Pakistan’s smallholder farmers’—PARC chairman
Article / ASSP / Goats / ILRI / Intensification / Pakistan / Pro-Poor Livestock / Sheep / Small Ruminants / South Asia

Livestock are ‘the future of Pakistan’s smallholder farmers’—PARC chairman

A flock of Makhi Cheeni goats near Hasilpur, Bahawalpur, Pakistan (photo credit: ILRI/M Sajjad Khan). ‘Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) Chairman Dr Nadeem Amjad stated that livestock was the future of the country’s poor farmers with small lands. . . . ‘Advisor to Sindh Chief Minister Nawab Muhammad Taimur Talpur inaugurated the shed as chief … Continue reading

Farmers coping with on-going drought in southern Africa need better weather advice and insurance
Agriculture / Animal Feeding / Article / ASSP / Cattle / Chickens / Crop residues / Dairying / Drought / Food Security / Goats / ILRI / Insurance / Poultry / Resilience / Sheep / Small Ruminants / South Africa / Southern Africa / Zimbabwe

Farmers coping with on-going drought in southern Africa need better weather advice and insurance

A new regional push, focused on promoting four key actions to adapt agriculture and curb growing hunger, could help, Ajayi said. The best ways to assist southern Africa’s farmers, agricultural experts said, are by increasing their access to insurance for crop failure and livestock deaths, and giving them better weather advice via mobile phone. Continue reading

Injection of new genetics funding to boost the health and productivity of Africa’s farm animals
Africa / Animal Breeding / Biodiversity / Biotechnology / Cattle / Chickens / Climate Change / Genetics / Goats / ILRI / Indigenous Breeds / LiveGene / LIVESTOCK-FISH / Pro-Poor Livestock / Project / Research / Sheep / Small Ruminants / Southern Africa / UK

Injection of new genetics funding to boost the health and productivity of Africa’s farm animals

Scientists will use funds from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to look at how genetic information can improve the health and productivity of farmed animals in tropical climates. The institutions in Scotland and Africa where the researchers are based are also making additional contributions, taking the total funding pot to £20 million over the next five years. Continue reading

Sheep genomics: ‘Sheep—A very long yarn’—Financial Times
Animal Breeding / Article / Central Asia / China / Genetics / Geodata / ILRI / LiveGene / LIVESTOCK-FISH / Sheep

Sheep genomics: ‘Sheep—A very long yarn’—Financial Times

‘Archaeologists have long known that people started to domesticate animals for food at the dawn of agriculture in the Fertile Crescent (the curve of land across the Middle East from the Mediterranean to the Persian Gulf) about 10,000 years ago. But details of the complex pathways through which improved livestock spread across Europe and Asia are only now emerging, as genomic technology makes it practical to compare the DNA of hundreds of animals across continents. . . . ‘A Chinese consortium led the sheep study in collaboration with the International Livestock Research Institute in Nairobi; it is published in the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution. Continue reading

Africa / Animal Production / ASSP / BecA / East Africa / Ethiopia / ILRI / Livestock / LIVESTOCK-FISH / Research / Sheep / Small Ruminants

Review of sheep research and development projects in Ethiopia

This working paper reviews and documents sheep research projects/activities in Ethiopia and provides an overview of major research outputs, dissemination of research results, impacts on the sheep industry, and the gaps in research. Thoughts on the future directions of sheep research are also presented. Sheep research and development in Ethiopia dates back to the early … Continue reading