6, rue Bouvier, 26150 Die, Station de Toukounous, par Filingué, Niger
- Key words: Niger, Sahel, animal husbandry, pastoralism, animal production
- Page(s) : 76-82
- Published in: 2006
This paper analyses the mortality and reproductive performances in the Toukounous Azaouak zebu herd, in Niger. Mortality was recorded on the whole herd from 1986 to 1992. Reproductive performances were estimated for all cows present in the herd from May 15, 1993 (296 cows) and born from 1976 up to 1992. General mortality averaged 4.9%, and cumulative calf mortality at 12 months was 8.5%. Calvings were regularly distributed over the year. Mean age at first calving (AFC) of heifers, born between 1981 and 1990, decreased from 1,354 days to 1,020 days, while average calving interval (CI) of cows, born between 1981 and 1988, decreased from 432 days to 362 days. Only the year, month of birth, and weight at 18 months had a significant effect on AFC, while parity rank alone significantly affected CI. Mean calving rate (1987 through to 1992) was 78%. The improvement in fecundity parameters took place from 1986, i.e. after the improvement in the livestock system, following the 1984 drought, was carried out.