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Diversity and Resilience to Socio-Ecological Changes of Smallholder Lagune Cattle Farming Systems of Benin

Maurice Cossi Ahozonlin () and Luc Hippolyte Dossa ()
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Maurice Cossi Ahozonlin: Department of Animal Production, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, University of Abomey-Calavi, Cotonou 03 BP 2819, Benin
Luc Hippolyte Dossa: Department of Animal Production, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, University of Abomey-Calavi, Cotonou 03 BP 2819, Benin

Sustainability, 2020, vol. 12, issue 18, 1-1

Abstract: The indigenous smallholder Lagune breed and the production systems in which it is embedded in Southern Benin have received very little research or policy attention. Consequently, very little information exists on the diversity of these production systems or on their capacity to adapt to ongoing socio-economic and environmental changes. This study aimed to explore and characterize the diversity of Lagune cattle production systems along with farmers’ local knowledge and resilience strategies. A questionnaire was administered to 417 Lagune cattle farmers across two agro-ecological zones: Ouémé Valley (OVZ) and Pobe (PZ). It included, inter alia, questions related to households’ socio-economic conditions, their cattle herd characteristics, and management practices. Categorical principal component analysis and the two-step clustering method were used to classify the production systems which were then compared using the chi-square and ANOVA procedures. Four distinct farm types were identified. This study revealed the important role of agroecology in the diversity of farmers’ breeding practices. Controlled mating was more common in tethering systems whereas uncontrolled mating, widespread in free-roaming systems, has favored Lagune breed admixture with zebus. Opportunities for conserving the genetic diversity within the Lagune breed might be greater in PZ where breed admixture was almost inexistent.

Keywords: adaptive strategies; livestock systems; management of local genetic resources; sustainability (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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