Fodder production

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Improved access to and availability of fodder for 25,000 livestock keepers' households

This project aims at strengthening the capacity of 900 pre-identified pastoralists in Tana river, Wajir, Baringo, Isiolo and Samburu counties in good agricultural practices of sustainable fodder production.

One of the approaches the project takes is to facilitate learning and exchange of ideas between and among the pastoralists. In this regard, an exchange visit between two groups from two of the counties was carried out in the month of April 2014.

Exchange Visit Report Exposure visit between Bisikidera fodder group of Tana River and Muungano Makaror of Wajir County (28'th'-30'th 'April 2014)

Purpose: The main goal of the exposure visit was to share knowledge between the two groups engaging in fodder production from TanaRiver and Wajir counties.The Bisikidera fodder group is based in TanaRiver with a membership of 100 members, and has 15 acres of land under fodder production. In 2013 the KRDP project (Enhanced community resilience through innovative market based approaches) improved the capacity of this group by providing them with seeds and training them in fodder production. However, the group did not manage to harvest the fodder due to inadequate watering. The group uses farrow irrigation to water the fodder using the water from canals of Bura irrigation scheme. Muungano Makaror farming group’ in Wajir on the other hand is part of the county's farmer's association and comprises of ten members (six women and four men). In addition to fodder production, the group also cultivates crops and grows different types of fruits including pawpaw, bananas and citrus, and they keep small ruminants. The group has been growing fodder on half an acre since 2009, when they realized that fodder production is a business opportunity and an effective mechanism to cope with drought .They irrigate the farm by pumping underground water using diesel pumps at cost of kshs 1300 per day. Since then, they harvested an equivalent of 400 bales, 20 of which was sold at the local market for Kshs 10,000 (approx. US$ 110). The group also utilizes the fodder to fatten goats and sheep which they sell in the local market.

Specific objectives of the visit 1. Bisikidera group to learn on production, harvesting baling, storage 2. Bisikidera Group to learn utilization of fodder on steer fattening 3. Bisikidera group to learn on Mixed cropping 4. The two groups to exchange the ideas on marketing fodder 5. Develop action plan for the next planting season

Key learning points of the visit. Mixed cropping Bisikidera group were very excited to learn how they can utilize the water from canal to grow other crops. that would grow well along with fodder. Muungano fodder group has been watering citrus fruits, paw paws and bananas together with fodder Agroforestry Muungano fodder group has been planting trees in the fodder farm as per of environmental conservation initiative. Steer fattening The member of Muungano group utilizes the hay from the farm to fatten shoats which are later sold in Wajir livestock Market.