On- Farm Performance Evaluation of Dorper Sheep Breed Crosses in Wolaita and Siltie Zones, Southern Ethiopia

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Addis Ababauniversity


A flock monitoring study on whole sampled households was conducted from November 2013 to April 2014 with the objectives of evaluating the reproductive and productive performance of Dorper sheep breed crosses, to determine the current production systems and to identify factors influencing the performances of Dorper sheep. The study woreda were purposively selected from Wolaita and Siltie zones and 65 households were monitored by establishing all farmers who received the breed Dorper sheep as sample frame. Data collected through questionnaire (survey) were entered into Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). Reproductive and growth data were subjected to GLM procedure of Statistical Analysis System (SAS) with fixed model. An index was calculated to provide overall ranking for qualitative data. Mean birth weight, weaning weight, weaning age, market age, market weight, litter size, age at first lambing and sexual maturity for Dorper sheep were 2.25+1.72 kg, 17.30+0.98 kg, 3.16+0.55 months, 12.66+1.39 months, 30.66+3.26 kg, 1.48+0.71, 11.81+1.37months and 5+0.74 months, respectively. Location, season, birth type, parity, sex and genotype had significantly (P<0.05) affected weaning weight. Season had influence on weaning age. Location, birth type, parity and genotype had significantly (P<0.05) affected market age. Season, birth type and genotype had influence on market weight in Dorper sheep. Age at first lambing was significantly (P<0.05) affected by genotype. Pre-weaning mortality rate of Dorper sheep was 2.93%. The primary purpose of Dorper sheep was for meat. Water shortages, feed scarcity and quality deterioration during dry seasons are the main challenges facing smallholder sheep farmers. Dorper sheep is able to consume diverse feed source and plant species that cannot be easily consumed by local sheep. In Siltie Dorper sheep was housing in the separate house. The major problems for Dorper sheep production in the areas were lack of overall extension supports (lack of awareness of market on the breed and its product), especially in Wolaita zone. To overcome the problems facilitating market opportunities by connecting the marketing route of this locality with big market players was recommended. Further study is needed to characterize meat quality and carcass yield percentages from locally available feeds of Dorper sheep in the area. Key words: Dorper, Ethiopia, husbandry, on -farm, performance, Siltie and Wolaita



Dorper, Ethiopia, husbandry, on -farm, performance, Siltie and Wolaita