Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International 2020-09-18T16:25:25+00:00 Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International Open Journal Systems <p style="text-align: justify;"><strong>Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International (2394-1073)</strong> aims to publish high quality papers (<a href="/index.php/JAERI/general-guideline-for-authors">Click here for Types of paper</a>) in all areas of Agriculture and Ecology. The journal also encourages the submission of useful reports of negative results. This is a quality controlled, OPEN peer reviewed, open access INTERNATIONAL journal.</p> Adoption of Napier Grass [Cenchrus purpureus (Schumach.) Morrone] among Livestock Farmers in Botswana: Challenges and Future Prospects 2020-09-18T16:25:19+00:00 K. Mogotsi M. Koobonye K. Galesekwe M. Odubeng <p>In order to assess the current adoption level of Napier grass [<em>Cenchrus</em> <em>purpureus</em> (Schumach.)] in Botswana as well as identify barriers hindering its uptake and effective use, data collection was done through a field survey of purposively selected sample of livestock farmers in North East District and adjacent parts of Central District. Findings of the study indicated that even though farmers’ overall perception towards Napier grass was positive, adoption levels were still low. Numerous challenges in Napier grass production included recurrent droughts, non-irrigation, limited access to planting/propagation material, shortage of labor, poor agronomic practices as well as lack of technical knowledge on management and utilization of the fodder grass. Even though adoption levels are still low, opportunities do exist to accelerate future uptake. For example, farmers proposed strategic interventions such as well packaged and targeted education on Napier grass production, subsidized borehole drilling, equipping and water reticulation for irrigation of fodder crops in their farming areas and more technical support from extension officers. Going forward, in order to achieve increased impact with Napier grass, the current extension approach in dissemination and adoption can therefore be effectively targeted primarily at farmers likely to accept and use the technology, instead of expecting every farmer within an agro-ecological zone to comprehensively implement the recommended technology disregarding feasibility, profitability and acceptability of such introduced fodder technology to individual farmers.</p> 2020-09-05T00:00:00+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Effects of Season Variation on Water, Feed, Milk Yield and Reproductive Performance of Dairy Cows in Smallholder Farms in Eastern Africa 2020-09-18T16:25:25+00:00 Ongadi Patrick Mudavadi Mpolya Abraham Emmanuel Gachuiri Charles Muyekho Francis Namasake Lukuyu Adubwa Bernard <p><strong>Aim:</strong> The smallholder dairy industry in Eastern Africa continues to be characterized by seasonality driven milk fluctuations and reproductive performance of dairy cows. In this review, we present important effects of changes in seasons on water, feed quantity and quality, milk yield and reproductive performance of dairy cows in smallholder dairy farms.</p> <p><strong>Methods:</strong> We considered peer-reviewed publications from 1990 to 2019, and extracted any information pertaining to the effects and intensity of changes in seasons and implications on water, feed quality and quantity, milk yield and reproductive performance.</p> <p><strong>Results:</strong> Seasonal variation in rainfall, characteristic of the East Africa region, is strongly reflected in cropping and feeding calendars. Hence, 305-days lactation milk production per cow in Eastern Africa ranges from 850-3150 kg/cow/year, which has not increased, partly because of lack of improvement in nutrition and management, but also due to slow genetic selection of breeds that matches available feed to milk yield and reproductive performance. High milk fluctuations arise mostly because of farmers’ dependence on rainfall for feed production and rarely make provisions for preserving fodder for the dry season, as there isn’t adequate forage (fodder and pasture) even during the wet season.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion:</strong> For the smallholder dairy farmers to remain competitive, it is important to increase the dairy value chain capability to manage implications of changes in seasons on milk yield and reproduction. Therefore, in order to overcome the current seasonal changes, we have discussed technological interventions in adoption of practical, sustainable farmer-led strategies for optimizing water and feed production, milk yield and reproductive performance in Eastern Africa. We have also identified knowledge gaps where research is needed to guide dairy value chain stakeholders on how to ameliorate current seasonal changes or that we expect will occur in the future.</p> 2020-08-28T00:00:00+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement##