Productivity Enhancement in a Cattle-Coconut Integrated System-Implications for Environmental Sustainability

Thakshala Seresinhe, I WAS Sujani

Abstract


A three year grazing study was conducted with cross bred heifers fed on natural herbage, tree fodder, rice straw and supplements. The treatments were coconut monoculture stand without animal component (control T1), coconut monoculture stand without animal component but with standard fertilizer levels and other management practices (T2), heifers grazing natural herbage under coconut (T3) and cattle fed with natural grasses + plus tree fodder and supplements (T4). Results revealed that, provision of tree fodder and supplements significantly improved the cattle performance by means of reducing ageand higher live weights at first calving. The birth weights of calves and milk yields of dams were also increased (P<0.05) with supplementation. Treatments T3 and T4 significantly enhanced the nut yield per palm and copra production per palm. A near doubling of coconut yield was reported in grazed coconut plots when compared with un-grazed coconut plots. There was no significant change in water holding capacity in response to the treatments. No changes were observed either in N, P, and K content in soil or coconut leaf due to treatments. Conclusion can be drawn as that integrated system improved the productivity in both animal and crop components.

Keywords


Cross-Bred Cattle; Integration; Natural Herbage; Supplements; Tree Fodder

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DOI: 10.14334/Proc.Intsem.LPVT-2016-p.127-131

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