Characterization of the Poultry Production System Among the Smallholder Farmers in Pader District a Case Study of Pajule Subcounty
Author: ASEKENYE CATHERINE
Supervisor: Denis Rwabiita Mugizi
The study set to characterize the poultry production system among smallholder farmers in Pader with focus on the management practices employed by farmers, social economic contributions enjoyed, major challenges faced and impacts of management practices on poultry production. This is because 50.1% of smallholder households in Uganda are involved in poultry keeping and 66.2% households in Pader (National Livestock Census report 2008).
The study used a case study design, using questionnaires to collect both qualitative and quantitative data from 397 households which was analyzed using excel and SPSS.
The findings indicated that the majority (97%) households kept indigenous chicken (p-value 0.000) under free range with 98.4% and (p-value 0.000). The average number of birds per household was 24. Common management practice were feed supplementation at 65% and (p-value0.003) using home saved grains and kitchen leftovers, few households had shelter for birds, few households paid attention to birdsí health in terms of vaccination and treatment including deworming at 95%.
NCD was the major disease affecting birds. Men wielded decisions on use of poultry proceeds with 85.7% and (p-value 0.000) while women and children took care of the birds. The common problems affecting smallholder poultry farmers were; predation and limited access to Veterinary services on poultry management.
In conclusion, the smallholder poultry production system in Pader basing on the above findings is characterized by indigenous chicken on free range system under the care of women and children, regular feed supplementation with limited poultry shelter and less care for poultry health due to limited access to veterinary extension services.
The researcher hereby recommends that: Farmers should consider provision of housing /shelter for their birds to reduce chances of predation and losses associated with adverse weather and vulnerability of chicks and brooding mother hens
There is need to rally private veterinary service providers to rollout affordable services. Since women were found to lead in poultry care role, development actors and policy makers should factor womenís empowerment through poultry related projects.