Description of Four Dual-Purpose River Buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) Farms in Tropical Wetlands in Mexico. Part 1: Social Aspects, Herd Distribution, Feeding, Reproductive, and Genetic Management

Authors

  • Aldo Bertoni Master's Program in Agricultural and Livestock Sciences [Maestría en Ciencias Agropecuarias], Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM), Xochimilco Campus, 04960, Mexico City, Mexico and Neurophysiology, Behavior, and Animal Welfare Assessment, Department of Animal Production and Agriculture (DPAA), Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM) Xochimilco Campus, 04960, Mexico City, Mexico
  • Adolfo Álvarez-Macías Neurophysiology, Behavior, and Animal Welfare Assessment, Department of Animal Production and Agriculture (DPAA), Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM) Xochimilco Campus, 04960, Mexico City, Mexico
  • Diego Armando Morales Neurophysiology, Behavior, and Animal Welfare Assessment, Department of Animal Production and Agriculture (DPAA), Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM) Xochimilco Campus, 04960, Mexico City, Mexico and Holistic management, Savory Institute, Agriculture Science, Universidad EARTH, Guácimo, 70602, Costa Rica
  • José Luis Dávalos Department of Economics, Administration and Rural Development, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico (UNAM), Mexico City 04510, Mexico
  • Daniel Mota-Rojas Neurophysiology, Behavior, and Animal Welfare Assessment, Department of Animal Production and Agriculture (DPAA), Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM) Xochimilco Campus, 04960, Mexico City, Mexico

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.6000/1927-520X.2022.11.02

Keywords:

River buffalo, production system, tropical wetlands, Bubalus bubalis

Abstract

This article characterizes four dual-purpose river buffalo farms (DPBPS) in south-southeastern Mexico. The objectives were to obtain a broader profile of this system and capture values related to buffalo breeding in that area. The study identified a group of producers with high levels of education (17 ± 1.15 years) and years of experience in agricultural systems (28.75 ± 10.81), especially with buffaloes (9 ± 1.83 years). Land tenure is private, and the average surface area of ranches is 428.75 ± 245.57 hectares, located mainly (92%) in flatlands and floodplains with an average number of animals per hectare 2.03 ± 0.69 AU/h. The area has various vegetable strata (grasses, bushes, trees). Feeding is based on the consumption of vegetable species like Camalote grass (Paspalum fasciculatum), West Indian Azuche grass (Hymenachne amplexicaulis), and Aleman grass (Echinochloa polystachya), complemented with minerals. Production units (PU) 2 and 3 add a low proportion of balanced feed. The average number of animals per PU is 611 ± 50. Dams and calves represent the largest proportions in the herds. The main breed raised in these buffalo production systems is Buffalypso (58% ± 21%), followed by Italian Mediterranean (24% ± 5%) and Murrah (10% ± 14%). The data collected show that the reproduction methods most often utilized, in order of frequency, are fixed-time artificial insemination (FTAI), direct mounting (DM), and estrus-detected artificial insemination (EDAI). Proportions are 61% ± 18%, 24% ± 25% and 14% ± 17%, respectively. The DPBPS studied are distinguished by the presence of owners and managers with high levels of education, extensive experience in agricultural systems, and the capacity and willingness to implement new technologies that permit continuous improvement. However, their experience in buffalo production is still limited, so there is ample room for improvement.

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2022-03-11

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