Use and Management of Animal Manure by the Communal Farmers, Seke District, Mashonaland East Province, Zimbabwe

Parwada C(1Marondera University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Department of Horticulture, P. O. Box 35 Marondera, Zimbabwe. 2Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Horticulture, Women’s University in Africa, P.O. Box 1175, Marondera, Zimbabwe)

Abstract


Poor handling and storage practices reduce the manure quality as a fertilizer.  A survey was done in the Seke communal area, Zimbabwe to establish common manure management practices, determine factors that influence use of manure and determine effects of the manure management practices on vegetable yield. A structured questionnaire was administered to 222 respondents from April to August 2019. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were done using SPSS. Chi-square tests and Spearman rank correlation were done to test for associations and the non-cause-effect relationship between different independent variables and farmers’ management practice of manure respectively. 88% of the respondents owned <1 ha of land and chicken manure was frequently (51%) used but with least (<0.5 t/ha) application quantities. Cattle manure was applied in largest (> 0.5 t/ha) quantities and >50% of the farmers were void of information on animal manure management. Fencing only was the common type of animal housing but had negative effects on quantity and quality of the manure. Drylot was most common (90%) manure management practice and different manure management practices had significantly (P<0.05) varied effects on vegetable yield. Drying manure resulted in significantly (P<0.05) low losses in manure quality. Generally, poultry and pigs manure had higher nutrient content compared to cattle and goat manure. Animal housing affected the quantity and quality of the manures as a fertilizer. Extension service programs like vocational training on manure management, exposure visits between farmers as well as a lead farm approach are necessary.

Keywords


Animal housing; Drying; Extension services; Soil fertility; Training; Volatilization

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.36956/rwae.v2i1.343

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