Sustainable strategies for forage development

in STEMGeeks6 months ago
Dear readers, sustainable development is of great strategic importance today, from this point of view, in the regions of the tropics there is a great diversity of natural resources that can be rationally exploited in order to conserve ecosystems and preserve biodiversity. In this sense, the implementation of an eco-sustainable development model in livestock production systems can improve productivity through the efficient use of available resources.

In that sense, for there to be a sustainable development in the agricultural sector, the principle of the conservation of natural resources must be complied with, which can be achieved if we manage the production units under the systems approach, analyzing the existing links between the components present in the agroecosystem, strengthening endogenous resources and decreasing the techniques that unbalance ecosystems and in addition to this some are very expensive, which are unsustainable for producers.

In the same way, Macilla (2000), proposed that in order to achieve sustainable forage agriculture, a rational management of the biotic and abiotic indicators of the grassland ecosystem must be carried out, in search of achieving the maximum potential of the same, for this man must know the dynamics of each of the elements within the grazing area: Plant, animal, soil, man and climate, with the aim of achieving a profitable and sustainable livestock production.

It should also be said that, at present, as a way of developing forage agriculture, in tropical regions they present excellent opportunities to increase production, reducing economic resources and environmental impact, with the use of local resources such as forage fabaceae that by associating them with the poaceae allows the diversification of forage resources and reduction of external inputs. These fabaceae-poaceae associations, is the synergy between two or more species, with the aim of improving the agronomic and productive conditions of the agroecosystems, native or introduced (naturalized) species can be used.

The forage fabaceae within the grassland ecosystem maintain acceptable nutritional values for the nutrition of ruminants, especially the protein contents, improving the nutritional value of the associated fabaceae, that is to say that from the agronomic point of view the associations present a nutritional potential within the ecosystems, providing the cattle forage with an acceptable quality, allowing a better ingestion capacity, better digestibility, presence of minerals and increases in protein percentages keeping them above the critical level 7%, in addition, Calsamiglia (1997) considers that the protein content of pastures is one of the determining factors in the quality of forages; although the consumption capacity (FND) and digestibility (FAD), play a fundamental factor within the nutritional values of forage species.

Consequently, it can be considered that sustainable forage development is linked to the interpretation of the ecosystem where it is developed and the implementation of appropriate management, taking into account that livestock agroecosystems are composed of essential components or indicators such as soil-plant-animal that must be taken into account for the production of biomass within the system and that must be managed by man under a sustainable approach that allows balancing production, increasing productivity, conserving natural resources, in order to achieve and maintain food security in this way.

The forage strategies that could be developed in grassland ecosystems, is the establishment of poaceae in association with fabaceae, as a multipurpose alternative to raise forage production, improve the nutritional quality of forage resources, which will allow maintaining adequate biomass and acceptable quality in the diet of the grazing animal and thus provide answers to the problem of livestock feeding in tropical regions, developing food sustainability within the system.

Final considerations
Dear readers, in short, knowing such an agrosustainable strategy, the need arises to progressively carry out the conversion of a monoculture system of grassland to associated systems of grassland and fabaceae, creating an environment conducive to forage production, ecologically and economically sustainable to maintain and / or restore fertility to the soils and consequently produce pastures with excellent morphoagronomic characteristics. in a balanced way with the natural resources and the functional biodiversity of the livestock agroecosystem.

Bibliographic references
  • Mancilla, L. (2000). Sustainable forage agriculture. In Z. C. Tejos Rony, Management and use of pastures and forages in animal production systems (pp. 26-39). Barinas: UNELLEZ.
  • Calsamiglia, S. (1997). New bases for the use of fiber in ruminant diets. Madrid, Spain: XIII FEDNA specialization course. Autonomous University of Barcelona.


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Love to read about these important plant species for animals

Hi @gwajnberg, if there are many alternative vegetables that can be an alternative for the diet of ruminants.

So long, have a great week.


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Well said, dear friend. Tropics are naturally blessed with diverse resources mainly from Agriculture but the issue here is how to manage and harness those resources where they will be useful in society.

Hi @apunawu, I totally agree with you in the tropico there are many species that can be used for animal food.

So long, have a great week.

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