Goat Rearing- A Pathway to Prosperity

Srimati Manjabai Pandharinath Sapre resides at a tiny hamlet, Dalyachi Wadi under village Askhed in Khed block of Pune district. She participated in the Goat Development Project supported by Forbes Marshall (FM) and implemented by BAIF Development Research Foundation at the field level in the year of 2017. 

The poor family was undertaking goat rearing for livelihood. Income from rearing was poor due to low productivity of the goats and mortality due to lack of critical technical and material support. The goats suffered from diseases and did not attain weight thereby reducing the profit margin. The mortality from various infectious diseases was close to 50%, too high to make a living from the rearing. Due to all these constraints, the family earned just about Rs. 12,000/- per year, which made her think of leaving goat rearing for good. But the family had no other options as the only other asset the family had was just half an acre of rain-fed agricultural land.   

However, as luck would have it, she decided to participate in our the Goat Development Project. Through the project, she got training in improved goat rearing practices and got exposed to goat keepers in Sangamner who were earning a good income from goat rearing by practising regular vaccination and de-worming, maintaining hygienic conditions, cultivation of nutritious fodder, proper feeding as per age, weight and condition of the animal and by adopting various best goat husbandry practices. The exposure visit made her realize, the reasons for low productivity in her goat flock. 

She began implementing all that she had seen during the exposure visit in the right earnest. The project supported her to undertake cultivation of maize of African Tall variety and Hybrid Napier grass. The project provided her 200 cuttings- the material for plantation of Hybrid Napier. The grass was planted on the homestead. There was a significant improvement in the condition of the goats with the feeding of green fodder. 

Besides, the project provided her improved feeding and watering systems that helped in better utilization of the feed and fodder and keep the loafing shed clean. For improving the growth rate, the project provided service for the castration of male kids. Rearing goats on the platform instead of the ground helps in keeping them safe from moisture especially in the rainy season. In other seasons too it helps in maintaining sanitary conditions as the dropping that pass through the gaps in the bamboo pole can be easily collected, cleaned and the premises kept clean. The incidence of sickness due to footrot and pneumonia associated with the unhygienic condition could be avoided. The family also receives project promoted services such as timely vaccination, de-worming, spraying for control of ticks and lice, regular weighing on weighing scale for monitoring growth and pricing during sale.  

No surprise that the annual income saw an uptick and she earned Rs. 99,600/- from goat keeping. The flock size also increased from 10 to 46, the asset value of which is Rs. 3.5 lakh. Manjabai promotes the knowledge she gained to others in the village so that they too could come out of poverty.