Performance and limitation of two dairy production systems in the North western Ethiopian highlands
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Alemayehu, Y.A.; Wurzinger, M.; Tegegne, A.; Zollitsch, W. 2009. Performance and limitation of two dairy production systems in the North western Ethiopian highlands. Tropical Animal Health and Production. 41(7): 1143-1150.
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In order to characterise the dairy production systems as well as the productive and reproductive performance of dairy cows in the study area, a total of 256 and 54 dairy farms were used for survey and monitoring data collection, respectively. Based on breed, land size, feed and market accessibility, two major dairy production systems were identified: a rather specialized, urban, and a peri-urban dairy production system. Urban farmers owned larger herds but farmed less land, and sold a greater proportion of liquid milk than peri-urban farmers, who processed more milk. Purchased feed played a more important role for the feed supply of urban than peri-urban farms. Significant breed effects were found for productive and reproductive performance traits. It is concluded that improved breeding and health management, genetic improvement of local breeds and supplementation of poor quality feed resources are the key factors for enhancing productivity of dairy cows and thereby increasing family income from milk production.