On-Farm Performance Evaluation of Friesian X Boran Crossbred Dairy Cattleunder Smallholder Farmers'Management around Holettaand Addis Alem, Central Highland of Ethiopia Introduction
Academy of Agriculture Journal
The productivity of F1 crossbred cows and growth performance of their calvesunder smallholder farmers' management level was evaluated. Twenty threefirst parity pregnant crossbred cows disseminated to farmers around Addis Alem and Holetta areas. A total of 48 F2 crossbred calves born at both locationswere used also for the study. Location had significant (p<0.05) effect on lactation milk yield, lactation length, annual milk yieldand daily milk yield butdid not show significant effect (p>0.05) on
... effect (p>0.05) on calving interval. Parity had no effect (p>0.05) on lactation milk yield, lactation length, daily average milk yield, annual milk yield and calving interval. Crossbred cows managed by farmers around AdisAlem area had higher (P<0.05) daily, lactation yields and lactation length of (8.78±0.34 lit, 2942.18±283.05lit and 324.80±26.15 days, respectively compared to cows around Holetta area (7.65±0.3lit, 11482.70±252.08lit and 194.28±23.29 days), respectively. However, calving interval was not significantly influenced by location.Calves born around AdisAlem had higher meanbirth,weaning,six months and yearling weightsof (29.04±0.39 kg, 66.14±1.89 kg, 94.33±4.23 kg and149.23±8.44kg, respectively).While calves born around Holettaattained lower mean birth, weaning, six month and yearling weightsof (27.26±0.33kg, 59.43±0.3.3kg, 84.05±3.49kg and 124.38±6.22kg,respectively).Calf sex had no marked effect(P>0.05) on birth and weaning weights. However, it had effect on six month and yearling weights.The effect of calf sex on post weaning growth performance of calves reared under farmers management condition could be manifested by preferential management treatment rendered to female calves than males. In conclusion important factors mainly feed availability, artificial insemi nation and health services should be improved in order to improve milk production andgrowth performances of dairy cattle in smallholder farmers.