Productivity of traditionally managed small ruminants in an agro-pastoral system in Northern Burkina Faso
Keywords:Sheep, Goats, Traditional management, Sahel, Burkina Faso
AbstractResults of a 2-year study of indigenous sheep and goats in a traditional management system in Burkina Faso are reported. Age at first lambing was 446 days and at first kidding was 455 days. Litter sizes were 1.02 in sheep and 1.21 in goats. Intervals between successive births were 274 days and 291 days in sheep and goats, respectively. The only significant effect of season, year of birth and parity on litter size was that of parity in goats; there were no significant effects on the birth interval in either species. Season, year of birth, parity, birth type (single or twin) and sex all exerted significant effects on weight at specific ages from birth to one year old. Seasonal changes in weight of adult female sheep (mean, 25.6 kg) were 89.5-113.7% of the overall mean and of adult female goats (mean, 24.3 kg) were 91.9-113.1 %. Productivity indices (weight of young weaned per breeding female, per kg breeding female and per kg 0·73 breeding female) were 23.2 kg, 872 g and 2.11 kg for sheep; and 19.9 kg, 580 g and 2.06 kg for goats. The results are discussed in comparison with data obtained from elsewhere in West Africa.