Investigating ecological and economic aspects of rangeland livestock managements for meat or milk production

Document Type : Research Paper

Authors

1 Professor, Department of Range and Watershed Management, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran

2 MSc in Range Management, Department of Range and Watershed Management, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran

3 Professor, Department of Agriculture Economy, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad

Abstract

Rangeland stockholders are traditionally using their rangeland for producing various livestock productions such as milk, wool and meet (Several Products, SP). However in recent years, meat production as the only product (Meat Production, MP) is implemented in some rangelands of Khorasan Razavi. We compared effects of 7 years rangeland utilization methods (SP or MP) on the rangeland ecology and their economic benefits for the stockholders. By doing field visits, plant canopy cover, productivity, rangeland conditions and trends, and species diversity were measured and then calculated. Moreover, livestock weight, milk and meat productions, the time spent for livestock management, and 24 hours activities of animals in the rangelands were measured and compared between SP and MP methods. Results indicated similar species diversity and plant production for both MP and SP methods. Major differences were found in terms of incomes, total incomes was 17% higher but total expenses were 70% lower in MP method, leading to 24% higher net income. Moreover, rangers had to spend more time for preparing milk products and selling them in cities, by the MP method. In their daily activity, livestock spent hours more for walking and grazing, which had led to higher soil and vegetation deterioration in MP site. In future, higher income and easier livestock management may encourage stockholders towards higher implementation of MP method. Therefore, future studies should consider best MP method that leads to least side effects on the rangeland soil and vegetation.

Keywords


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Volume 74, Issue 3
December 2021
Pages 625-632
  • Receive Date: 09 December 2015
  • Revise Date: 29 February 2020
  • Accept Date: 10 March 2020
  • First Publish Date: 22 November 2021