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Mtengeti et al., 2006. Livest. Res. Rural Dev., 18 (8): 108

Document reference 
Mtengeti, E. J. ; Mhelela, A., 2006. Screening of potential indigenous browse species in semi-arid central Tanzania. A case of Gairo division. Livest. Res. Rural Dev., 18 (8): 108

The potential indigenous browse species at Gairo Division in central semi arid Tanzania were screened by using local goats, livestock keeper's indigenous knowledge and laboratory analysis of their nutritive value. Screening covered three grazing sites. The sites were; bush lands, two-year fallow lands and seasonal sand riverbanks. Local goats were followed in the grazing sites to see what they browsed. Samples of the browsed shrubs and trees species were collected in gunny bags and then shown to local livestock keepers and requested to give their indigenous knowledge on these browse species and then rank them according to their importance as livestock feed. The top ten ranked browse species were used for acceptability test with local goats so as to compare the ranking of livestock keepers and livestock preference. Crude protein (CP) and in-vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD) of the top ten ranked browse species were also determined. A total of 26 browse plants were observed being browsed by goats but local livestock keepers identified only 24 as potential browse species. Most of the browse plants had several other uses. In general the ranking of the browse species by livestock keepers was close to the preference by local goats. Albizia petersiana had the highest intake rate followed by Grewia bicolor and the least was Lannea tomentosa (13.2, 11.2 and 3.6 g DM/min, respectively). The crude protein content ranged from 12.6% in Lannea schweinfurthii to 28.1% in Acacia polyacantha. Maerua trychophylla had the highest digestibility followed by Lannea shweinfurthii (64.4 and 61.3%, respectively). It was concluded that in order to identify the right indigenous browse plants for conservation; the browsing animals, local livestock keepers' indigenous knowledge and laboratory analysis of their nutritive value must be included in the screening work.

Citation key 
Mtengeti et al., 2006