Livestock is vital to the economies of many developing countries, animals being a source of food more specifically proteins in human diets. Animals also provide hides and skins, income and foreign exchange.
Dr Patrick Ssenkimpi Patrick, a lecturer at Makerere University and pre-urban dairy farmer in Busika, shares key tips on dairy keeping.
The uniqueness of Ssekimpi’s dairy farm
- He has an efficient management system, where he stores enough feeds to ensure his animals are well-fed.
- He ensures that his animals are of good genetics. He uses sexed semen to maintain a uniform herd of only cows.
- Record keeping. He has adopted a Dutch system where he monitors his cows on the phone since he has to lecture as well. This helps him keep an eye on his project and run it efficiently.
- He maintains cow comfort, which makes them produce more milk. He provides them beddings, quality feed, medication and good sanitation that helps them produce more milk.
- He provides the cows clean and plenty of water.
- He gives 4-6 litres of colostrum to the calves for two months and later introduce solid feed to enable them grow stronger and give space for the mother cow to produce more milk.
- He ensures community engagement, which has helped him get security for his venture and also improve livelihoods of the many families around his farm.
- Ssekimpi milks twice a day and manages to collet 30 litres of milk from each cow.
Why the Friesian breed?
The Friesian breed is one of the best for dairy farming because generally it is a good milker.