Management of Calliandra Calothyrsus in Association with Pennisetum Purpureum for Increased Dry Season Forage Production on Small Holder Dairy Farms in Central Kenya

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Date
1998
Authors
Zachariah O.N
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Zachariah O.N
Abstract
Smallholder dairy production in Kenya is seriously constrained by inadequate fodder especially in the dry seasons. An adequate nutrient supply is further hindered by qualitative deficiencies, as a result of the peculiar growth characteristics of the basal Napier grass forage that grows and matures rapidly with the onset of the rains thus becoming fibrous and deficient in nitrogen and soluble carbohydrates. Crop residues which constitute another important and often major feed resource utilised during the dry season are often of poor and highly variable quality. The available treatment methods for improving the consumption and digestibility of crop residues are often inappropriate for smallholder farmers because of the nonavailability of the chemicals, health risks and cost of additional labour. Inclusion of leguminous fodder shrubs in the farming system could be used to address this problem.
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