All posts by raziqkakar

Currently working as Technical Manager Al Ain Dairy Camel Farm, UAE. Before, worked as as Prof & Dean Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lasbela University of Agriculture, Water and Marine Sciences Pakistan. My thematic areas are; research policy, Turning camel from a beast of burden to a sustainable farm animal, extensive livestock production systems. Author is the founder and head of the Society of Animal, Veterinary and Animal Scientists (SAVES) Founder of the Camel Association of Pakistan Organizer of the Group Camel4Life. As a freelance scientist working (as member of steering committee) for Desert Net International (DNI). My focused area of research is the characterization, documentation and reporting of the indigenous livestock breeds (AnGR) and effort for recognition of the native genetic resources at policy levels. Thinking of natural resources especially, biodiversity and efforts for their humane use and conservation in the context of climate change and food security is my dream.

Camels’ Manure~From Waste to a Worthwhile Farming Agent

Camel dung is beautiful in its architecture, dry and odorless. Camels’ manure/dung is use as a fuel agent in many developing countries, especially among the pastoralists’ communities. It is ready to burn after a very few minutes and does not need to dry in sunshine for many days like cows’ dung. In small scaled farming system it is use both for fuel and organic fertilizer. In northeastern Balochistan and Southern Afghanistan, it is use as a fertilizer for Pomegranate and wine trees(personal communication).

camel dung

In Americas, the dung of new world’s camelid (Llama) is use to neutralize the acidic, metal-laden water through a highly unusual filter: llama droppings in Bolivia 1. It is very good agent for filtration because of its higher fiber contents.

On the other hand, camels’ manure is going waste in countries (its original habitat) with highest camel population per unit land mass area (Gulf countries) in the world. UAE, Bahrain and Qatar has the highest camel population on per unit land mass at global level, producing millions of tons of manure annually; all going waste. I only found one reference that BP use camels’ manure in Sharjah (UAE) for the decomposition of hydrocarbon leaked in the soil/water 2. Camels’ dung is use for Bio-Paper production in India but at a minor level.

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Based in UAE, here a common misperception is prevailing regarding camels’ dungs as; it has no value as fertilizer. This perception had made camels’ dung a valueless atom and it is a burden on camel breeders to properly dump. On contrary (research findings) camel dung has almost the same value as that of cow dung 3.

Camel dung decomposes faster than many others because of the diverse and stronger micro flora in camels’ rumen. Camel is therefore more efficient in nutrient recycling, making camels’ dung more useful for cropping and farming. Hoffmann and Muhammad revealed that camel dung is not differ from cow and other ruminants’ dung 4.

In conclusion, camels’ dung is untapped precious resource which is not properly utilized so far. The visionary and innovative opinion in Gulf countries, especially the UAE can bring silver sliding in the clouds and may find ways to use this precious resource for the agricultural development of the region. Also, the research institutes of the region should come forward to chalk out projects on the exploring true worth of camel dung.

This piece of manuscript is the tip of the ice burg and brain storming to launch a discussion regarding this precious organic material. I hope to hear from different quarters and to find ways for its judicious use. The GAA of the FAO can be a great forum to address this issue.

I hereby suggest some of few ways can be the best use for camels’ dung.

  1. Farm Yard Manure/fertilizer
  2. Material to combat desertification and dune fixing
  3. Bio-paper
  4. Bio-gas
  5. Power generation

References

  1. Bijal P. Trivedi. 2002. Llama Dung May Be Used to Clean Bolivia Water Supply. National Geographic Published online (ttp://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/02/0205_0205TVllamadung.html)
  2. Godfrey Uzodinma Iregbu, Ibrahim Hayatu Kubkomawa, Chidiogo Grace Okoli, Emanuel Chinedum Ogundu, Martin Chukwudi Uchegbu, Ifeanyi Charles Okoli. 2014. Environmental concerns of pig waste production and its potentials as biofuel source Journal of Animal and Veterinary Sciences 2014; 1(3): 17-24. Published online November 10, 2014 (http://www.openscienceonline.com/journal/javs)
  3. M. Irshad, A. E. Eneji, Z. Hussain and M. Ashraf. 2013. Chemical characterization of fresh and composted livestock manures. Journal of soil science and plant nutrition. Published online (http://www.scielo.cl/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0718-95162013005000011)
  4. Hoffmann, I. & Mohammed, I. 2004. The role of nomadic camels for manuring farmer’s fields in the Sokoto close settled zone, Northwest Nigeria. Nomadic Peoples 8(1): 1-14.

TEEB AgFood: Calculating the Real Price of Food

“In the face of a rapidly overheating climate, collapsing fisheries, degraded soil, depleted water resources, vanishing species, and other challenges directly related to agriculture, we can no longer afford to pursue a flawed accounting system.”

Go to the link for detail study of the article.

https://wordpress.com/read/post/feed/39553851/896750661

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Mariwal sheep grazing in grasslands of Luni area Loralai

Turning Again to the Native Gene ~ Back to the Future

Turning Again to the Native Gene ~ Back to the Future

The catastrophes of climate change along with growing desertification consequence in adoption of new strategies. The industrialized nation’s choice is mitigation strategy while among the native livestock keepers’ adaptation is the best tactic. Unfortunately, the so called policy makers (at all levels) are not that much in tune (with the above said challenges) as the rural indigenous people of the bush are. These sensible livestock keepers know how to materialize livestock agriculture sustainably as; to satisfy versatile requirements of the owner/community and endure its own life whereas depending on available natural resources.20151009_172921

The so pseudo green revolution (1960s era) was actually a trick of the capitalism to provide an immature solution (factory farming) to increase productivity but contrary it resulted in erosion/dilution of the precious native animal genetic resources and depletion of soil fertility. Coincidentally, nature reacts after each specific period and shed all the unkind things attach to it; intensive farming is failing in many ways.

A Case Study from Balochistan

In months of September, October (2015), I visited the rural areas of northeastern Balochistan. I sniffed a very positive change, the wise decision of the community elders; turning back to the native cattle. Many small scaled farmers have adopted the native cattle (Kohe-Suleimani/Lohani/Kakari®) to better utilize free available natural resources and ensure sustainable production. The lovely Kakari cows mostly depend on the bushes, especially Sarghasie (abundantly available bush in the region) which is otherwise useless. Some wise farmers narrated “native cow is the best weed regulator” as she restricts the weeds/bushes to creep in the cropping lands. She is the best convertor of bushes into food item and high fibrous manure.20151012_101537

The dung produced by the cattle provides softy and fluffy texture to the soil, making it apt for cropping. The cow manure is highly preferred for wheat, tomato, cauliflower, almond and apricot agriculture. Sometimes, the dung is use in construction material as added to the mud plaster. The native cow is unique as; grows well, catches high consumer demand, resistant to health ailments/parasites and easy management making it the best choice as a farm animal.20151009_170928

Nevertheless producing little milk (2-3 liter per day with a shorter lactation length), idolized as best in conversion of poor quality roughages into precious milk and meat. The yummy, creamy and appetizing milk make it super cow than the exotic one. Its milk is esteemed as beautifying skin and treats febrile conditions. The special taste of ghuarri (a Pashtu word use for ghee) produced from its milk is highly anticipated. Pashtuns’ folk poetry is rich with the appreciation of the precious ghuarri. The surplus ghuarri is sold by the women and the income purely owned by them. Now a day, the prices for ghuarri is too high and attracts bulky Pakistani rupees. Hey! The native genes empower the women, they told.20151009_174051

The steer catches reasonable prices at the occasion of Eid-Adha, highly preferred by locals and suit well to common customer. A slightly pinkish color beef (not too red) has special desire and high organoleptic scoring. It is approachable selection for the low income groups during the Eid-Adha and other religious/cultural occasions. A native keeper whispered that it takes little time to cook, making a good selection for women.20151011_161325

The strategies adopted by the native/indigenous people are highly useful to guarantee sustainable farming systems under climate change scenario. Their knowledge is based on centuries’ long experience and evolved with the natural phenomena; making it the treasurable heritage of humanity. Unfortunately, their consents are never asked while making policy regarding the livestock agriculture both at national and international levels. It would be so great if native livestock keepers are involved in policy making to ensure sustainable and ecological farming.20151011_161444

For more details, please go to the links below;

http://dry-net.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/091220_potential_of_livestock_breeds_of_Baluchistan_final_.pdf

http://www.pastoralpeoples.org/docs/CGRFA_LIFE_sideevent_kakar.pdf

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/216121092_Prospects_of_Livestock_Production_in_Balochistan

®Native livestock Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture are very diverse in many ways, having different names in different regions, many colors, sizes and purposes etc.

Ways Recommended to Turn Camel Again to its Future

Natural Health with Camel Milk

Though the concept is changing, generally camel is considered as animal of backward and bush. The common person’s mind quickly jump to the desert, pastoral people and harsh terrains as soon hears the name of the camel. In some quarters, the mindset is changing, especially among the scientists and development worker. Unfortunately, the policy makers still neglecting this untapped precious resource as they prefer fast growing animals to place in developmental policy because of many reasons; all are baseless and void of scientific arguments.11390267_10153421606844559_6036169588689380506_n

Recently, a successful conference was organized under the patronage of International Society of Camelid Research and Development. The title of the conference was “4th Conference of ISOCARD “Silk road camel: the camelids, main stakes for sustainable development”IMG-1ffc708cbc78410

http://conference.kaznu.kz/en/conferencies/40/4th%20Conference%20of%20ISOCARD

The conference was held in Almaty, Kazakhstan (8-12 June, 2015). Around 225 participants from 35 countries took part in this important conference. Many results from the recent scientific…

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International Camel Society Showed Serous Concerns on Important Camel Decline

Natural Health with Camel Milk

The International Society of Camelid Research and Development is a non-political, non-religious and nonprofit federation of camelid scientists or similar scientific and professional associations. The society works for the scientific status of camelid sciences, promotion of camel science for camelids development, promotion of scientific publications in camelid fields, to set high standards in camelid education and training, promote standards of health and welfare in camelids, encourage exchange of knowledge and to organize international conference every 3 years.

http://www.isocard.net/en/about

IMG-1ffc708cbc78410The last conference was held in Almaty, Kazakhstan (8-12 June, 2015). The 225 participants of the conference, have proposed the final recommendations which have been validated by the Executive Council. All the participants’ anonymously expressed their serous concerns on the sharp decline in camel population of India.

http://www.isocard.net/images/announcements//FILEc554c4cf9e3290a.pdf

As a foreword, the general assembly of ISOCARD has expressed its concern regarding the important decline of the camel population in India, which is…

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Al Ain doctor sees potential in camels beyond their milk

Natural Health with Camel Milk

The camel has been an integral part of life in the Arabian peninsula, and elsewhere, for thousands of years, but their potential is yet to be fully realised, says Dr Abdul Raziq Kakar.

The technical manager for Al Ain Dairy’s camel farm, he has launched Camel4Life, a group to promote the use of camels by the world’s poorer communities, and to give traditional producers an international voice.DSC01463

“Camels ensure life and livelihood in far and wide regions of the world,” Dr Kakar said. “They ensure access and transportation in harsh terrains of the globe and walk for almost 40 kilometres [a day], graze on scarce and scattered woody vegetation, which is otherwise wasted, and convert it to precious food items like milk and meat.”

Dr Kakar, who is also founder of the Camel Association of Pakistan,credited camel milk with relieving his arthritis more than a decade ago, when…

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