Friday, September 30, 2011

A unique and fascinating creature! the camel




A unique and fascinating creature! the camel


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Camel had been playing pivotal role in socioeconomic life of its breeders. Camel is highly admired throughout the histroy. This precious animal is unique of its kind and highly useful in desert and steepy terrians of the world. Camel is even highly praised in the religeous beleives and highly appreciated in the holy books.


In holy Quran it is said 'Do they not look at the Camels, how they are made?  And at the Sky, how it is raised high?  And at the Mountains, how they are fixed firm? And at the Earth, how it is spread out?  In these honored verses, Allah (Praise & Glory be to him) surpassed the camel upon all other living creatures, and made the contemplation of how it was made prior to raising high the sky, fixing firm the mountains, or spreading out the earth. In this honored verse, the Creator, who knows the secrets of his creatures, advises people to think and contemplate in creating camels as a creature witnesses Allah\'s glory, power and planning.


The Arabs believe that only the camels know the one-hundred name of God, means that the human being knows 99 names of Allah and 100th name is only known by camel. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) delivered his last sermon, which is considered the Charter of the Humanity, while sitting on a camel called Qiswah. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) will be sitting on a camel while entering Jannah and Hazrat Bilal (RTA) will have the Mahar of the camel, leading camel to Jannah.


Camel has itself all the capabilities, which are scattered in all the other known and useful animals. Every product of camel is useful. Even urine and faeces are valuable. Camel urine is used for medicinal purposes, otitis (ear infection), ascities (water belly) etc, and faeces is used as organic manure and fuel. The long bones of camel are used by jewelers in some Arab and African countries. The camel rearing communities have very firm links with camel culture, e.g. camel racing and dancing are very common.


Some of the many known and unknown qualities and significances of camel are presented in the ensuing lines.




  • Camel is the only livestock specie which was originally domesticated for milk; God gifted the camel to Prophet Saleh (PBUH) for milk only, almost 3500 BC.


  • Camel is the only animal of dry lands which can produce up to 40 liter milk per day in ordinary grazing conditions. Such high yielding specimens are found in Pakistan, especially in deserted areas of the country.


  • It is the most efficient in milk production on per unit feed consumption basis, i.e. a cow in rangelands conditions needs 9.1 kg of dry matter feed to produce one liter of milk, while camel produce one liter of milk by consuming only 1.9 kg of dry matter feed in the same conditions.


  • The lengthy days without water couldn\'t depress the camel\'s milk quantity or quality. The milk becomes even more watery during the period of water scarcity to fulfill the water requirements of thirsty suckling calves.


  • Camels have four teats with at least two orifices in each teat. If one orifice is blocked the milk can come through the other orifices.


  • Camel contains equal quantity of milk in four quarters, not like cows, which have more milk in hindquarters.


  • The colostrums are white and watery instead of thick and cream colored (cow colostrums).


  • The content of niacin in camel milk is remarkably higher than in cow milk.


  • Camel milk contains five times more vitamin C compared to cow milk. Vitamin C is anti infectious and is very important for human health, especially in dry and deserted areas.


  • Camel milk contains insulin like protein and is therefore used to treat Diabetes mellitus.


  • Camel milk has higher levels of potassium, magnesium, iron, copper, manganese, sodium and zinc than cow milk


  • Camel milk contains medicinal properties to treat different ailments such as autoimmune diseases, allergies, asthma, rashes, diabetes, liver disorders, ascites, rheumatism, inflammatory conditions, piles, urethral irritation, infectious diseases like tuberculosis, stress, depression, peptic ulcers and cancer.


  • Camel milk is a nervine tonic and helps in good eyesight. The pastoral people depending on camel milk never get weak eyesight.


  • It is a booster of the immune system, contains protective proteins, including the immunoglobulin necessary for maintaining the immune system and nutritional advantages for brain development.


  • Camel milk has higher levels of lactoferrin and lysozyme which play a central role in the determination of these properties.


  • It contains 25-30 times as much lactoferrin as cow milk. Lactoferrin is a fairly recently discovered iron containing protein that has been shown to have antiviral, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-carcinogenic effects.


  • Camel milk is use as aphrodisiac, especially in the stressful conditions of the dry hot weather.


  • The low quantity of beta casein and the lack of beta lactoglobulin are linked to the hypo-allergic effects of camel milk.


  • Because of the low lactose content, it does not cause lactose intolerance problem in infants. Camel milk can be the best replacement of infant food after the mother\'s breast.


  • Camel milk is a rich source of proteins with potential anti-microbial and protective activity.


  • The camel milk fat is bound with the protein; therefore, it is difficult to remove fats from camel\'s milk. The fat globule are smaller in camel milk than in cow milk and it\'s explain that camel milk is unstable at high temperature.


  • Camel milk protein is coated with fats, which enhance protein absorption. It passes the acidic stomach undisturbed (does not coagulate easily because of fat coating) and reaches the intestines for absorption.


  • Camels\' milk fat contains much higher concentration of long-chained fatty acids (C 14 - C 18) than short-chained fatty acids, and is therefore healthier.


  • Sour camel milk is not waste but is a part of the traditional diet in Somalia as 'susa' and in Arabia as 'Al-garss' and in Baloch pastoral as 'Sorain'.


  • A camel dairy in the UAE and an Austrian chocolatier recently teamed up in a joint venture to produce chocolate made from camel milk, sweetened with honey from Yemen.


  • Making cheese from camel milk can be difficult, but the Maurietanian Tiviski Dairy processes camel milk into modern, high-quality products. Camel cheese 'Camelembert' is one of their special items.


  • Mongolian nomads in the Gobi Desert distil a delicious drink from soured camel milk with low alcohol content, known as 'camel vodka'.


  • Camel ice cream was first promoted by the Israeli scientist Reuven Yagil, but the National Research Centre on Camels in Bikaner, India, now also produces a delicious camel milk-based kulfi, a local variation on ice-cream.


  • Camel oil, produced in Australia, is lower in cholesterol than other animal cooking fats, and can be used to make soaps and cosmetics, even creams for sensitive baby skin. A line of cosmetics based on camel milk is also the dream project of Nancy Abdeirrahmane from the Tiviski Dairy. Camel meat is healthier as they produce carcasses with less fat as well as having less levels of cholesterol in fat than other meat animals.


  • Camel meat is also relatively high in polyunsaturated fatty acid in comparison to beef. This is an important factor in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.


  • Camel meat is also used for remedial purposes for diseases such as hyperacidity, hypertension, pneumonia and respiratory disease as well as an aphrodisiac.


  • Camels reach live weights of about 650 kg at 7–8 years of age, and produce carcass weights ranging from 125 to 400 kg with dressing-out percentage values from 55to 70 Camel carcasses contain about 57muscle, 26bone and 17fat.


  • Camel lean meat contains about 77water, 19protein, 2.8fat, and 1.2ash with a small amount of intramuscular fat, which renders it a healthy food for humans.


  • Camel meat has been described as raspberry red to dark brown in color and the fat of the camel meat is white.


  • The amino acid and mineral contents of camel meat are often higher than beef, probably due to lower intramuscular fat levels.


  • Camel meat has been processed into burgers, patties, sausages and shawarma to add value.


  • Because of its low cholesterol content, Australia\'s National Heart Foundation has put camel meat on its list of highly recommended food items. 'Camburgers' and 'camfurters' are among the products that have been produced by a team of scientists around Prof. Farah at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.


  • Camels can travel many days without feed or water. In the kind of terrain I like to ride in, this is a very important factor.


  • A traveler can continue journey without bothering too much about the feed and water. Camel eats each and everything when tired and hungry.


  • The long muscular legs allows camels to cover great distances, they walk up to 40 km per day with 200 to 300 kg of baggage.


  • Camel is better as riding animal than horse. They are quieter and gentler than horses.


  • Camels seem smarter than horses about getting themselves out of a precarious situation. If a horse gets tangled up in a rope, it may struggle violently and get rope burns (or worse). A tangled up camel will, after briefly testing the bonds, sit quietly and figure out what to do next.


  • Camels can carry more weight than horses. Also, a well-designed camel saddle has more room to carry whatever extra gear you are packing than a horse saddle has.


  • Riding a camel is quiet and peaceful (that is, once the camel is well trained enough that it no longer grumbles along the way). Camel\'s slipper-like feet make hardly any noise. Without the clip-clop of hooves, you can hear the wind sighing in the brush, the rustle of autumn leaves, a coyote howl in the distance on a moonlight ride.


  • The camel gets in high spirits at the tune of music and songs and it walks faster in spite of being tired.


  • The camels are the most disciplined and obedient creatures. They and can be ordered to sit or stand again and again and can walk in a row silently behind the leading man, woman or even a child.


  • The camel is a unique beast of burden, which is loaded in sitting position and gets up with a jerk of its long neck.


  • Camels do not need to be shod. The cost of shoeing horses can really add up! Furthermore, camels don\'t usually colic like horses do, although they occasionally bloat.


  • There is a certain pride in riding a well-trained camel. It is a sign of prestige for camel owner to ride and travel on a meahari camel.T


  • The disease register of camel is quite short (very few fatal diseases are reported in camel). Camel is resistant to many notorious diseases like foot and mouth disease, mad cow disease (BSE) and Brucellosis etc.


  • Camel is resistant to ticks diseases. A load of more than 100 ticks on camel body cannot affect camel health and production.


  • The camel has a large mouth, with 34 sharp teeth. They enable the animal to eat rough thorny bushes without damaging the lining of its mouth.


  • Camel can eat everything (bark, dates seed, salty mud and even paper) when there is scarcity of feed, while in good feeding conditions, it does prefer protein rich diet.


  • The long flexible neck and legs saves it from ground heat and gives easy approach to tall trees for browsing. Camel can browse at 3.5 m above the ground.


  • The formation of the mouth is such that there are long conical papillae on the inside of the cheeks directed backward and the camel can browse at the thorny plants without any harm. The canine teeth help the camel to take into grip the twigs. Such kind of teeth is not found in other ruminants. The soft palate is developed and comes out on one side of the mouth like a red hanging bladder. This happens usually in rutting (breeding) seasons.


  • Camel has a well-developed power to smell. They can smell water 50 mile away by smelling geosmin which is a fragrance produced by streptomytes species growing in the dump soil.


  • Under very hot conditions, the camel may drink only every 8-10 days and loose up to 30of the its live body weight through dehydration. Other animals die at 10live body loss through dehydration.


  • Camel urinate less than 1 liter of urine per day in hot summer days. In the period of water scarcity camel urinates a semi liquid substance like syrup.


  • Oval shape erythrocytes (instead of round in other animals) expand up to 200their normal size as camels drink rapidly an amount of 190 liter of water in 10-15 minutes.


  • Camel can store water in its all body compartments (intracellular, extracellular, blood and digestive tract etc). Every organ has the extraordinary capacity to store water.


  • They can live without water for 3 days in summer and 7 days in winter. However, there are some examples of this animal remaining without water for 20 to 40 days. After 40 days the camel goes blind due to excessive dehydration.


  • Camel can vary body temperature up to 6.7 Cº, having a great endurance power to stand scorching heat. Camel even absorbs heat in the day time by increasing body temperature and dissipates it in the cool night.


  • The ability of camel to allow its body temperature to fluctuate in response to some form of environmental stress saves significant amounts of energy and water.


  • The well-developed hump is full of fat that serves as a store of water and food at the time of starvation. The fat of hump gets dissolved gradually during starvation and collects again at the time the camel gets adequate water and feed.


  • The flat pads of the feet are horny and cushioned and help the camel to walk on the sand without making any sound while the feet of other animals sink into the sand. Due to this quality, the camel has been given the name as the 'ship of the desert'.


  • Camel feet are soft and friendly to vegetation. The hooves of cow or small ruminants are more aggressive to the soil and contribute more often to the degradation of the pastures in case of overgrazing.


  • The chest pad helps the animal to take rest on it while sitting on the ground. The rest of the body is saved from concussion against the ground. There are other pads at the knee and half joint and in front of the joint of thighs. These prevent the limbs from concussion against the ground.


  • The spines of all vertebrates of the thoracic region are long & high and make the hump, which is more developed than all other Brahman cattle.


  • The camel sleeps less and possesses great power of remembrance. It keeps in mind the harsh behavior, beating or even the abuses from the camelman and takes revenge at the appropriate time.


  • The male urinates in spurts while standing and urine goes back in between the hind legs and falls on the ground. Its refresh the femoral vein and decrease the heart temperature for water economy. This enables the animal to save itself from slipping in its urine.


  • Camels are hornless and lack gall bladder.


  • Camel has prominent eyes with a wide range of vision. They are protected by an overhanging upper lid with long eyelashes, which protect the eyeballs from powerful rays of the sun.


  • The upper lip of the mouth has a cut in the middle. The flaps of the upper lip not only help in catching the twigs (thin shoots of the trees and bushes) but also enable the nostrils to cover to keep out the sand and dust at the time of dust storms.


  • The ears are small but have a great power of hearing. Camel can hear and understand the voice of its herder from a long distance.


  • The camels are regarded as the most intelligent animals and can find out their way in the desert when there are no signs of road.


  • The Bedouin gives name Ata ullah to camel, mean the gift of God.



Besides above mentioned peculiarities, camel is always neglected among the policy makers. It attributes are never praised and no visible effort has been done for its development. Camel can be a good tool in the global environmental changing scenario and food insecurity situation. Camels are very much under threat and up to 25 of the camels are vanished in the last decade, especially in Asia. Only 2010 thousands of camels were dead because in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India of a new respiratory camel disease. In spite of many cries by the author and other friends no positive response was attracted. I hereby appeal the international bodies like FAO, IFAD and other organization to give proper place to camel in international policies for agriculture.






Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/a-unique-and-fascinating-creature-the-camel-4217611.html
About the Author
Dr Abdul Raziq, PhD in camel breeding and production. Author has been the part of international forums working on the livestock and agriculture issues. He is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Envrionmental Scientists. The author is working for the LIFE Network also, which struggle for the rights of livestock keepers at global level.

Season of Camel Fairs in Pakistan

Photograph for Mangrota Camel Fair
Note: To know more about Mangrota Camel Fair, please visit: http://saves.org.pk/pub/6.pdf

Camel plays very pivotal role in the sociocultural and socioeconomic life of its herders throughout the world. Pakistan is the home of almost one million camels belong to many diverse breeds. There are three main habitats of camel in the country, i.e. desert, plain lands and mountains. The camel in the above three ecosystems are very diversify from each-other and among themselves in the same habitat. This difference makes a beautiful biodiversity of camel in the country and making more than 16 breeds of camel. Pakistan is rich with camel culture and every tribe of camel keepers know all the attributes of their type of camel. At the end of their camel year, they celebrate camel mela or fair in many parts of the country. Such melas are the best place where the camel herders meet and share their experiences and situation. Thousands of camel are bring and these melas are use as a unique and major market place for camel business. Such fairs are mostly link with some spiritual or religious rituals and the camel herders link camel with spirituality.
Here below are the names of the famous melas of the country. Most of them are held in the months of October, November and December.

The most important camel events at country level in Pakistan are; 

  • Anayat Shah
  • Karorr Pakka
  • Sakhi Sarwar
  • Shah Jamal
  • Odaro lal
  • Mangrota
  • Jalsa (DG Khan)
  • Sibbi Mela
  • Chnan peer (Cholistan)
  • and Thandla

These events provide a noble chance for camel stake holders to meet and enjoy different events like folk music, camel dance, racing and camel fighting etc. The same events are the key business points of camel.
The government support is very limited in these cultural events. There is always lack of facilities, especially water sources are very scarce. 






Also, some people bring camels with some epidemic disease which causes havoc losses. 
Being the organizer of Camel Association of Pakistan (CAP), I hereby appeal government to please take interest and help the camel herders and pastoralists. Also, these events can be good sources of revenue generation if tourists are attracted.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Illegal camel export threatening camel population in Pakistan
Pakistan is the cradle of animal genetic resources, camel is one of the most special. Pakistan is home to more than 20 breeds of camel, living in different types of habitats and ecosystems. Camel provides food and livelihood to millions of people and live in harsh and hostile regions of the country. Camel is facing many problems and threats, all are man-made.
Illegal camel export is one of the major threat to camel population in Pakistan. Thousands of camel export to Iran and Gulf countries illegally and very inhumane. There is severe shortage of meat in country but this precious and healthy source of meat is going without any hurdle and difficulty. Though there is ban on live or meat of animals but it is continue under the eyes of the administration. Here is the link of a short video clips, loading camels in a big loading truck to export to Iran. The situation is eyes opening.




A unique and fascinating creature! the camel

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Small-scale production systems secure sustainable food supply and conserve biodiversity




Small-scale production systems secure sustainable food supply and conserve biodiversity


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Small-scale production system (SSPS)




In this article, the term SSPS will be use both for agriculture and livestock production. SSPS is playing crucial role in the food production and biodiversity conservation throughout the world. In agriculture, SSPS is mainly comprised of the farmers holding less than 2 hectares land. Such farmers usually depend on their local seed verities and use farm yard manure from their own animals waste for the fertility of their field crops. They do not use or rarely use pesticides and herbicides. They control pests with their own local/indigenous knowledge (IK), mainly comprised of biological control. They use their own skills for weeds control, as rotational cropping and grazing by the livestock etc.


Small-scale livestock production is based on subsistence foundations. Such livestock keepers keep mostly their indigenous livestock breeds, as local breeds are well adapted to the ambient ecosystems (harsh and hostile). Local livestock breeds are resistant to many diseases and pests, like ticks and flies etc. Indigenous livestock breeds (ILB) need very low inputs or even zero inputs for their production and survival. In many cases small-scale livestock keepers are landless farmers. They rely on marginal lands for grazing of their livestock; such lands have no other use. The small holding agriculture farmers are also holding small-scale livestock for food production, agricultural operations and soil fertility.


Small-scale agricultural systems are more resilient to climate change and ensure biodiversity. Their production system is quite sociable and in concord with the biodiversity. In most of the cases, small-scale production is organic in nature and health friendly. Traditional and indigenous cultures may be sources of agricultural knowledge useful for devising sustainable production systems. Small-scale producers therefore have an important role to play in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, especially MDG1.


Food security: Food is the very basic need and its security is the right of every individual on the globe. With a slight improvement this year but still the number of hungry people is around one billion. Food security is one of the major concerns of the present global scenario. Unfortunately most of them are from the developing country. Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are far away to achieve, especially MDG1 (eradication of extreme poverty and hunger).


The situation is even more worsening because of much sad state of situations, like land grabbing, factory farming, struggle for gene control and climate change scenario etc. Open market economies, multinational companies struggle to control on gene and political influence of the rich people combine affect the small-scale production systems adversely. Small-scale production systems are the guarantee of safe food for millions of people on one hand and conservation and sustainable use of the biodiversity on the other hand.


Biodiversity: Biodiversity conservation is link to the question of food security. There is very strong link between biodiversity and food security. More diversified the agroecosystems (life, soil and landscape etc) more the resilience of the community to climate change. Unfortunately, more than 90of the crop varieties have disappeared from farmers fields and half of the breeds of many domestic animals have been lost. The other flora and fauna, not documented and studied are even not recorded.


Unfortunately, the present high input unsustainable production systems are based on high inputs (pesticides, fossil oil, fertilizers and antibiotics) and promote monoculture. Such move is resulting in the ever high loss of biodiversity and eliminating SPSS at high level. Because of high demand for animal protein, a short cut solution was adapted to cross the indigenous livestock breeds with the high yielding exotic breeds. Very limited number of breeds/verities within a species were selected for food production resulted in the narrowing the consumption of biodiversity in food chain. Also a high selection intensities within these breeds/verities resulted in further narrowing the gene pole of the biodiversity. The genetic variation, comprised of components between and within breeds/verities, is now under threat because of such intensive selection. The dependency on the genetic resources for food is narrowing, making the food chain even more fragile.


Also, big ideas like dams, highly mechanized monoculture agricultural production (green revolution) resulted in high level of environmental degradation and biodiversity loss. Such dilemma resulted in minimizing the options sustainable food production.


Conclusion: Small scale production system is very important for food security in the climate change context and conservation of biodiversity. Millions of the people around the world are involved both for production and consumption through this system. Such system is very much resilient to the climate change and droughts. While using very low or neglected quantity of fossil oil, they are mitigating climate change. The system is custodian of the precious biodiversity of agroecosystems, rich with biodiversity and in harmony with nature. Unfortunately the forces like, globalization, open market economies, gene control and industrialization/mechanization in agriculture are threatening this system. There is utmost need to characterize, documentize, visualize and prioritize this system both as a food security option and conservation of the biodiversity. Also, it is the need of time to give opportunity to play its role in the future food production systems.
Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/environment-articles/small-scale-production-systems-secure-sustainable-food-supply-and-conserve-biodiversity-5158906.html
About the Author
Being the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES), I am working on the issues of dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds with respect to climate change scenario. Author had been working with the pastoral people for last 10 years, while characterizing and documenting livestock breeds and indigenous knowledge, especially related to camel. Ahthor had been delivering training to the livestock keepers in remote for vaccination, drenching and other valuable practices. I am the author of the indigenous livestock breeds, livestock production systems of the tribal people and indigenous knowledge in Balochistan province, Cholistan and Thar Desert of the Great Indian Desert. He had been traveling with the Afghan nomads (Kochis) to work and document on indigenous knowledge and livestock breeds/husbandry.


Author organized camel scientists and herder in Pakistan and founded Camel Association of Pakistan. I am PhD in camel science and presented many international research presentations at various occasions.Dr Abdul Raziq had visited many countries and research stations.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Camel, the animal of future

Camel is the integral part of culture and back bone of the pastoral economy in the arid zones of the world. Camel provides safe, healthy and biologically organic milk. Camel is use for draft purpose in the harsh, hostile and inaccessible territories of the world. Camel is hardy, with very unique biological features, enabling him to consume water and feed sources very judiciously. Camel produces food item, especially milk in the very low inputs system. The special feature of camel makes it exceptional to combat the soaring sun shine and high ambient temperature. 
Camel tolerates extreme weather conditions and produce milk when other livestock special strives to sustain life. Camel is one of the best tools to combat the climate change and future food insecurity problem. Unfortunately, camel itself and its production system is under threat. In many parts of the world it is neglected and hardly spaced in the research and policy of governments. The major threat to camel is its habitat demolition. There is utmost need of time to save and conserve our camel.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Save the planet by killing camels”: Australia’s solution to global warming? A false and stupid solution

Save the planet by killing camels”: Australia’s solution to global warming? A false and stupid solution
Recently, a media release, titled “The Australian authorities will kill feral camels to save the planet”, revealed the intention of the Australian government to fight global warming by killing camels. “It was suggested that the methane emission by camels in the bush is greater than that from cattle and that the feral camels in Australia are contributing significantly to global greenhouse gas emissions. So, the solution is simple: kill the camels and Australia will contribute to the global effort to save the planet. There are several scientific and empirical responses to further such a statement. The estimation of methane emission by camels is based on cattle data extrapolation, ignoring the fact that the metabolic efficiency of camel is higher than that of cattle and that camels are able to produce 20% more milk by eating 20% less food, they have different digestive system and are more efficient in the utilization of poor quality roughages. The rumen flora digesting the roughages is also different than cattle, and their energetic metabolism is closer to monogastric than that of true ruminants such as cattle and sheep. Therefore, the estimation of camel methane emission is quite debatable, as well as the estimated feral population.

It is true that camel overpopulation could generate environmental problems and that requires proper management, but to take such a decision by targeting camels and to consider them as a major contributor to methane emission among other herbivores in Australia is not reasonable. With less than 28 million heads at world level, the camel population represents less than 1% of the total herbivorous biomass in the world.  Elsewhere, camel population is living in extensive arid lands where the carbon and methane emission is among the lowest at the surface of the earth.

The International Society of Camelid Research and Development (ISOCARD) with more than 300 of its members from all over the world, and representing different fields of research, considers the decision to point out the feral camels as one of the main culprits in generating the greenhouse gases in the Australian bush as a scientific aberration. Instead the feral dromedary camels should be seen as an incomparable resource in arid environments. They can and should be exploited for food (meat and milk), skin and hides, tourism etc. We believe that the good-hearted people and innovating nation of Australia can come up with better and smarter solutions than eradicating camels in inhumane ways.

For ISOCARD: the executive committee

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Food Security and Climate Change


I am an applied animal scientist and had been working with livestock breeds issues in the context of food security and climate change. Climate change is affecting and will affect (worst) animal genetic resources for food and agriculture and its production systems. Most probably with the consequences of climate change, every year new diseases inter in the disease register of livestock species. Last year a fatal respiratory camel disease was reported from many quarters of Asia, while killing hundreds of camels. The disease was linked to the dry spell in the desert because of no rains.
On the other hand, introduction of exotic high yielding livestock breeds (mostly Holstein cow) in the dry lands of the globe is a useless and desecrate exercise. Such breeds need very high inputs. While providing a favorable environment a lot of energy and water are needed. Grain feeding, high veterinary inputs, need for skilled human resources and other limiting factors are also link to such breeds.
Local/indigenous livestock breeds are very important and play pivotal role in food security and livelihood earning of the livestock keepers in the world. Such breeds need very low or even zero inputs. They rely on marginal lands, not suitable for agricultural activities. Local breeds are highly resistant to the climate change affects, diseases, feed/water scarcity and droughts.
Unfortunately, there is political and industrial backing for the introduction of exotic breeds just for monitory interest. Local livestock breeds are always neglected while formulating policies for food security and livestock production. The local livestock farmers are also neglected and never participated in policies formulation. Such circumstances make it difficult to achieve the goals of food security, especially in the climate change context. LIFE Network has introduced the idea of livestock keepers’ rights.
Also climate change issue is always dragging politically. Carbon credits, methane gas production etc, all are considered as the produce of animals, especially livestock of food and agriculture. In this context thousands of Australian camels are proposed to be killed/shoot as carbon credits. Such methodologies are unacceptable and cannot help in reality. The same camel can be use as food aid and food security in the drought affected areas, once provided those camels to Australia, especially Afghan people.

In short local livestock breeds can be the best tool to combat the affects of climate change on one hand and to reach the goals of food security on the other hand.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

World Camel Day. 22 June, 2011




World Camel Day. 22 June, 2011


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Dry lands are judiciously use by precious indigenous livestock breeds and camel is one of the most important among those breeds. The best utilization of marginal dry and deserted lands is livestock keeping as crop production is not sustainable agricultural activity. Camel is solution for many difficult questions of near future, especially climate change, water shortage and global warming etc. Camel uses water and feed resources very sensibly under very harsh and hostile environmental conditions.  Camel is very affective biological model, needs very scarce inputs and produce efficiently more than other livestock on per unit feed/water consumption. Details about the unique characteristics of camel can be revising from the following link.



http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/a-unique-and-fascinating-creature-the-camel-4217611.html


In spite of all its characteristics camel culture is facing many challenges. Such challenges are now well addressed by many camel scientists. In the present decade, the importance of camel is well realized and documented. Many scientific literatures were produced to highlight camel importance. Many camel projects were initiated on camel milk and other utilization. A camel bicultural paper is one of the unique of its kind.


http://agro.biodiver.se/2011/03/saving-the-camel-through-dung/


To highlight the importance of camel and challenges it faces, a world camel day was proposed by the author and ultimately 22 June was declared as world camel day. Camel day will be celebrate in many parts of the world by camel scientists and activist to highlight it as integral part of biodiversity and efficient biological model in the dry and deserted lands of the world.


Society of animal, vet and environmental scientists (SAVES) and LIFE Network Pakistan is going to celebrate this day by conducting seminars and media campaign in Pakistan. As UN is celebrating the decade of Biodiversity,


http://www.decadeonbiodiversity.net/


It is very in place to celebrate camel day and correlate it with the decade of biodiversity. Camel is very integral part of the world of biodiversity and not harmful for flora as camel takes few bite and walk to the other plant. Camel pad is like cushion and not harmful for the plants in the rangelands and desert.


Thanks to all camel scientists and activists who supported me for declaring a world camel day.



Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/world-camel-day-22-june-2011-4884435.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). I had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds for food and agriculture. The author have the experience of livestock keeping, breeding and healthcare with both indigenous and modern knowledge. He had been working with the pastoral people for last 10 years, while characterizing and documenting livestock breeds and indigenous knowledge, especially related to camel. Ahthor had been delivering training to the livestock keepers in remote for vaccination, drenching and other valuable practices. I am the author of the indigenous livestock breeds, livestock production systems of the tribal people and indigenous knowledge in Balochistan province, Cholistan and Thar Desert of the Great Indian Desert. He had been traveling with the Afghan nomads (Kochis) to work and document on indigenous knowledge and livestock breeds/husbandry.


Author organized camel scientists and herder in Pakistan and founded Camel Association of Pakistan. I am PhD in camel science and presented many international research presentations at various occasions.Dr Abdul Raziq had visited many countries and research stations.

Friday, June 10, 2011

22 June, World Camel Day (WCD 2011)


Indigenous livestock breeds are play pivotal role in the livelihood earning of the livestock keepers in the dry lands. The best utilization of marginal dry and deserted lands is livestock keeping as crop production is not sustainable agricultural activity. Camel is solution for many difficult questions of near future, especially climate change, water shortage and global warming etc. Camel uses water and feed resources very sensibly under very harsh and hostile environmental conditions.  Camel is very affective biological model, needs very scarce inputs and produce efficiently more than other livestock on per unit feed/water consumption. Details about the unique characteristics of camel can be revising from the following link.
http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/a-unique-and-fascinating-creature-the-camel-4217611.html
In spite of all its characteristics camel culture is facing many challenges. Such challenges are now well addressed by many camel scientists. In the present decade, the importance of camel is well realized and documented. Many scientific literatures were produced to highlight camel importance. Many camel projects were initiated on camel milk and other utilization. A camel bicultural paper is one of the unique of its kind.
http://agro.biodiver.se/2011/03/saving-the-camel-through-dung/
To highlight the importance of camel and challenges it faces, a world camel day was proposed by the author and ultimately 22 June was declared as world camel day. Camel day will be celebrate in many parts of the world by camel scientists and activist to highlight it as integral part of biodiversity and efficient biological model in the dry and deserted lands of the world.
Society of animal, vet and environmental scientists (SAVES) and LIFE Network Pakistan is going to celebrate this day by conducting seminars and media campaign in Pakistan. As UN is celebrating the decade of Biodiversity,
http://www.decadeonbiodiversity.net/
It is very in place to celebrate camel day and correlate it with the decade of biodiversity. Camel is very integral part of the world of biodiversity and not harmful for flora as camel takes few bite and walk to the other plant. Camel pad is like cushion and not harmful for the plants in the rangelands and desert.
Thanks to all camel scientists and activists who supported me for declaring a world camel day.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Camel under threat




Camel under threat


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Camel is very precious animal genetic resource of the drylands and playing pivotal role in the livelihood earning of the pastoral people of that region. Camel is a miracle and precious gift of Allah. Camel has all the characteristics alone which are scattered in almost all other livestock species and even plants. The importance of camel already explained in the previous article published in Articlebase.com. http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/a-unique-and-fascinating-creature-the-camel-4217611.html


In spite of the all the characteristics and peculiarities, camel are never addressed while formulating policies for the agricultural and rural development of the dry lands. It is very unfortunately that such a well adapted livestock like camel is neglected especially in the circumstances of desertification, climate change and global warming scenario. Some breeds of camel, under very minimum external in puts and ordinary grazing systems produce more than 30 kg of milk. Camel is an efficient machine which produces milk with a very low consumption of energy and proteins. Camels have true potential to combat the creeping desertification and global warming. It is a guarantee for safe quality food for the coming decades and centuries.



The situation for camel is now very miserable. This precious animal is under threat. There are many reasons for this sad state of situation but all are manmade. Negligence about the importance of camel and considering it as an old fashion are the main drivers for threatening camel development and production. I think the camel issue is not a country\'s issue. It is a regional issue i.e. the camel is pushed in large number to Iran from Pakistani Balochistan by smugglers. They don\'t bother about sex and physiological status. Many of them are pregnant. The number of camels is speedily decreasing in Pakistan, though our grey records don\'t correspond with this sad situation. The same is a dilemma in Afghanistan and India. Only in India, camel population dropped steeply within 10 years by about 50 The situation in Pakistan, especially Balochistan is not different from that. The best milk producing breeds of camel in Pakistan are Kharani and Brela. Kharani breeds is highly smuggled to Iran while Brela breed from Thar and Cholistan desert had been exported at large scale to Arabian rich gulf countries.



Unfortunately, one gets the impression that there has been not much development on this and that no donor has taken up this issue, although the camel is about the best thing that could happen to humanity as a means of adaptation to climate change and decreasing groundwater resources. Furthermore, the health benefits for Diabetes patients also make its milk a prime marketable good. Thousands of really marginalized people could contribute to food security and develop an economic perspective, if they received support with setting up value chains and marketing arrangements. Unfortunately, in the absence of such support, it is only cash-rich countries or private investors who can reap the benefits. The Arabian Gulf countries are currently trying to buy as many female camels as possible, since their supply of milk cannot match
demand, especially with demand for camel milk powder to make chocolate. It would be a tragedy if countries such as India, Pakistan, Iran and others would sell out their genetic resources that are incredibly valuable assets during climate change and provide livelihoods for rural people who are currently despondent because of lack of economic perspectives..


Suggestions and further innovations


There need to join hands and work on regional basis. SAVES is looking for a regional cooperation on the issue of camel decline. In this connection, value addition to camel milk is one of the key spot to help camel keepers and to conserve breeds. Livestock keepers are the custodian of their breeds and related indigenous knowledge is the basis for sustainable husbandry practices. Both the keepers and ultimately the indigenous knowledge are under threat.


LPPS in India is working on various products (incl. ice cream) and also has test-marketed the milk to local Diabetes patients in Jaisalmer with a good response. Nevertheless, there are many technical problems to be overcome and investments needed - in order to set up a camel dairy and cooling chain.



Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/camel-under-threat-4380961.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). Author had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds. The author have the experience of livestock keeping, breeding and healthcare with both indigenous and modern knowledge. He had been working with the pastoral people for last 10 years, while motivating livestock keepers for their rights and access to grazing lands under the patronage of SAVES. Ahthor had been delivering training to the livestock keepers in remote for vaccination, drenching and other valuable practices. He is the author of the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol, which serves for the rights of the pastoral people under the ABS and work for the implementation of the Article J8 of the CBD. He is also the author of the indigenous livestock breeds, livestock production systems of the tribal people and indigenous knowledge in Balochistan province, Cholistan and Thar Desert of the Great Indian Desert. He had been traveling with the Afghan nomads (Kochis) to work and document their indigenous knowledge of livestock husbandry.


Author organized camel scientists and herder in Pakistan and founded Camel Association of Pakistan. Recently in Jan. 2010, we organized 3 days livestock keepers meeting under the patronage of SAVES and discussed the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol and organized an organization with the name of Indigenous Livestock Breeders Association (ILBA).
He has already presented many international research presentations at various occasions.Dr Abdul Raziq had visited many countries and research stations.

Agricultural development and role of Media




Camel under threat


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Camel is very precious animal genetic resource of the drylands and playing pivotal role in the livelihood earning of the pastoral people of that region. Camel is a miracle and precious gift of Allah. Camel has all the characteristics alone which are scattered in almost all other livestock species and even plants. The importance of camel already explained in the previous article published in Articlebase.com. http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/a-unique-and-fascinating-creature-the-camel-4217611.html


In spite of the all the characteristics and peculiarities, camel are never addressed while formulating policies for the agricultural and rural development of the dry lands. It is very unfortunately that such a well adapted livestock like camel is neglected especially in the circumstances of desertification, climate change and global warming scenario. Some breeds of camel, under very minimum external in puts and ordinary grazing systems produce more than 30 kg of milk. Camel is an efficient machine which produces milk with a very low consumption of energy and proteins. Camels have true potential to combat the creeping desertification and global warming. It is a guarantee for safe quality food for the coming decades and centuries.


The situation for camel is now very miserable. This precious animal is under threat. There are many reasons for this sad state of situation but all are manmade. Negligence about the importance of camel and considering it as an old fashion are the main drivers for threatening camel development and production. I think the camel issue is not a country\'s issue. It is a regional issue i.e. the camel is pushed in large number to Iran from Pakistani Balochistan by smugglers. They don\'t bother about sex and physiological status. Many of them are pregnant. The number of camels is speedily decreasing in Pakistan, though our grey records don\'t correspond with this sad situation. The same is a dilemma in Afghanistan and India. Only in India, camel population dropped steeply within 10 years by about 50 The situation in Pakistan, especially Balochistan is not different from that. The best milk producing breeds of camel in Pakistan are Kharani and Brela. Kharani breeds is highly smuggled to Iran while Brela breed from Thar and Cholistan desert had been exported at large scale to Arabian rich gulf countries.


Unfortunately, one gets the impression that there has been not much development on this and that no donor has taken up this issue, although the camel is about the best thing that could happen to humanity as a means of adaptation to climate change and decreasing groundwater resources. Furthermore, the health benefits for Diabetes patients also make its milk a prime marketable good. Thousands of really marginalized people could contribute to food security and develop an economic perspective, if they received support with setting up value chains and marketing arrangements. Unfortunately, in the absence of such support, it is only cash-rich countries or private investors who can reap the benefits. The Arabian Gulf countries are currently trying to buy as many female camels as possible, since their supply of milk cannot match
demand, especially with demand for camel milk powder to make chocolate. It would be a tragedy if countries such as India, Pakistan, Iran and others would sell out their genetic resources that are incredibly valuable assets during climate change and provide livelihoods for rural people who are currently despondent because of lack of economic perspectives..


Suggestions and further innovations


There need to join hands and work on regional basis. SAVES is looking for a regional cooperation on the issue of camel decline. In this connection, value addition to camel milk is one of the key spot to help camel keepers and to conserve breeds. Livestock keepers are the custodian of their breeds and related indigenous knowledge is the basis for sustainable husbandry practices. Both the keepers and ultimately the indigenous knowledge are under threat.


LPPS in India is working on various products (incl. ice cream) and also has test-marketed the milk to local Diabetes patients in Jaisalmer with a good response. Nevertheless, there are many technical problems to be overcome and investments needed - in order to set up a camel dairy and cooling chain.



Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/camel-under-threat-4380961.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). Author had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds. The author have the experience of livestock keeping, breeding and healthcare with both indigenous and modern knowledge. He had been working with the pastoral people for last 10 years, while motivating livestock keepers for their rights and access to grazing lands under the patronage of SAVES. Ahthor had been delivering training to the livestock keepers in remote for vaccination, drenching and other valuable practices. He is the author of the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol, which serves for the rights of the pastoral people under the ABS and work for the implementation of the Article J8 of the CBD. He is also the author of the indigenous livestock breeds, livestock production systems of the tribal people and indigenous knowledge in Balochistan province, Cholistan and Thar Desert of the Great Indian Desert. He had been traveling with the Afghan nomads (Kochis) to work and document their indigenous knowledge of livestock husbandry.


Author organized camel scientists and herder in Pakistan and founded Camel Association of Pakistan. Recently in Jan. 2010, we organized 3 days livestock keepers meeting under the patronage of SAVES and discussed the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol and organized an organization with the name of Indigenous Livestock Breeders Association (ILBA).
He has already presented many international research presentations at various occasions.Dr Abdul Raziq had visited many countries and research stations.

OU on the BBC: Earth Reporters - OpenLearn - Open University

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Camel Meat

Camel meat is praised for its good quality, especially if it is derived from the calf. The major meat contents i.e. moisture, protein, fat and ash are reported as 71, 21.4, 4.4 and 1.1% respectively. Camels are good potential meat producers especially in arid regions where other meat-producing animals do not thrive. They grow well and yield carcasses of a comparable weight to beef cattle if optimal management conditions are provided. Camel meat, especially from young animals, contains low fat with low cholesterol as well as being a good source of amino acids and minerals. Camel meat is less tender than beef are probably due, at least in part, to the higher average animal age. The author recommend more research work in areas of meat production, technology, marketing, and social awareness is needed to exploit the potential of camels as a source of meat.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Anthropological facts about camel in Suleiman mountainous region of Balochistan Pakistan




Anthropological facts about camel in Suleiman mountainous region of Balochistan Pakistan


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Abstract


Camel came a bit late in the register of animal domestication. It is strongly believed that dromedary camel domesticated in the region, now known with the country Yemen (some 3200 years back) Bactrian camel was believed to domesticate in the historic town of Bakhdi in the Zoroaster\'s time, some 2200 years back. It is believed that before the introduction of dromedary camel in historic country of Bakhtaria, only Bactrian or Bakhdi camel was found , many tribes of the old Aryan tribes were nomads at that time & the Pakhit 'today\'s Pashtoon' were used to travel with their animals from Pamir region to Suleiman mountainous region which was their winter settlement the excavation of the ruins of Persepolis (Iran) Gandhar civilization (Sawat & Adjacent) only the statues & paintings of Bactrian camels were found. SMR being the 10 inter settlement of Pashtoon believed to have Bakhdi camel. The introduction of dromedary camel is linked with the Arab Muslims preachers. The Bactrian camel was crossed by dromedary to produce vigorous camel for heavy duty & the produced camel is still known as Maya in Pashto & is always one hump.


Location and History of research area



The region had very rich history. Avesta the holy book of Zoroaster written in 2570 and 2530 BP (Before Present) determines the Suleiman mountainous region and the Paktia in Afghanistan as Orawah. The region was called as Arya Warsha (mean the place for grazing). The word is still in use as Pashto (Warsh) word for the grazing land. Suleiman region is the historical home tract of the Pashtoon ethnic group. The famous Kase Mountain is situated here in Zhob district, which is believed to be the birth place of Kais the father of Pashtoon. Kharspoon, the grandson of Kais was believed to rule here with his family on the present northern Balochistan and Southern Afghanistan (Habibi, 1999). The famous Kharspoon Mountain is here in Musakhel district. The Baloch pastoral people live in the Southern part of the Suleiman region and famously called as Marri and Bugti hills.


Dromedary or Bactrian


The first definite reference to the dromedary in the Indian subcontinent appears to be in connection with the Muslim conquest {Muhammed bin Quasim, 717 A.D, Sindh} (Köhler-Rollefson, 1996). But this statement is true for the Indus delta, not for the mountainous region of Suleiman. Because the Suleiman Mountains are a major geological feature bordering ranges between the Iranian pleatue and the Indian sub-continent (Encyclopedia Wikipedia, 2007).


In Mohenjo-Daro, and Harappa archeological sites, the statues of indicus cattle were found but not that of camel (Habibi, 1999). But Epstein 1971, reported the remains of camel dating back to the third millennium BC, were excavated in Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa. In Loralai the statues of horses were excavated from the ruins dating back to the third millennium B.C. In Killi Gul Muhammad, Quetta the statues of Dear and Indicus cattle has been found. In Vida (old book of Aryan), the name of sheep, goat and cattle is common but the name of camel is not discussed (Habibi, 1999).


The time of the introduction of the dromedary in the region is particularly difficult to determine on account of the pre-existence of the Bactrian camel. In the Avestha the holy book references to the camel are common but it is not clear to which specie reference is being made. It is assumed that dromedary entered in the region concurrent with the Muslim preachers. The assumption is borne out by craving on the walls at Persepolis, constructed sometimes during the fifth or sixth century BC (Wilson, 1984). Habibi, 1999, assumed that the craving Bactrian camel on the walls at Persepolis, leading by man is believed to be the picture of the local people and camel of that time. The author personally visited the Buddha museum in Sawat (Falling in the north end of Suleiman mountainous series), where the statue of Bactrian camel was found. Bordering the Sulaiman Range to the north are the arid highlands of the Hindu Kush, with more than 50 percent of the lands there lying above 2,000 m (6,500 feet) Encyclopedia Wikipedia, 2007. Second proof of the Bactrian origin of the Kohi camel is its well adaptation to the extreme low temperature. The Kohi camel found on the peaks of Suleiman Mountains with a height more than 3000 meter ASL.


References


Encyclopedia Wikipedia, 2010, www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iranian_plateau


Epstein 1971, H. 1971. The origin of the domestic animals of Africa. Africana Publishing Corporation, New York, USA.


GOB, 1999, Balochistan District Database. Planning and Dev. Department, Government of Balochistan, Pakistan. http://www.bdd.sdnpk.org


Habibi, 1999, A.H. 1999. The short history of Afghanistan. Danish Publisher, Qisa Khuani Bazar, Peshawar, Pakistan.


Köhler-Rollefson. Ilse, (1996) the one-humped camel in Asia: origin, utilization and mechanisms of dispersal. Pp. 282-294 in D. Harris, Ed. The Origins and Spread of Agriculture and Pastoralism in Eurasia. London, UCL Press.


Nolte, 2003, M. 2003. The genetic characterization of Camelus dromedarius in southern Africa. Dissertation in Master of Science in Zoology in the Faculty of Sciences at the Rand Afrikaans University, Auckland Park Johannesburg, South Africa.


Wilson, 1984, R.T. 1984. Camels



Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/anthropological-facts-about-camel-in-suleiman-mountainous-region-of-balochistan-pakistan-4260693.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). Author had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds.

Agricultural development and role of Media




Agricultural development and role of Media


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Agriculture is the backbone of the national economy. It had been pretended that agriculture is the foremost priority in the development agenda, but investment in agriculture and rural development is still lagging behind. Communication for agriculture is also not seen as a major precedence at either national or international level and the role of the media as an effective player in agricultural and rural development is undervalued. Reporting on agriculture is largely restricted to natural disasters, food shortages and rising food prices. Some argue, however, that the media has a potentially broader role in raising the profile of agriculture amongst decision-makers as well as the wider public, and in communicating farmers\' needs.


The journalist\'s job is not to be the public relations tool of the development organization, of the Ministry of Agriculture or of the farmers\' organization. The journalist\'s job is to find and tell good stories from the fields and farmer communities. Journalists are not specialists in agriculture. The journalistic skills and use of those skills can bring information to the wider public. Traditionally the use of the media has been about communicating research messages when there are success stories in particular. But journalists have the potential to be more of an agent of changes themselves. They are in quite a unique position, potentially being the voice of policymakers, the voice of farmers, the voice of researchers. So they potentially can be quite a powerful catalyst for change.


The essential role of the media is to create opportunities for farmers to express themselves directly on the air: this is the only way that they will have a say and therefore participate in the decision process. The journalists need some training for reporting the issues of agriculture and rural development but unfortunately it is not a custom in many developing countries. In many countries, journalists are not specialized as agricultural journalists or any particular discipline. So I think that scientists should play a more active role in simplifying their research findings, making it easier for the journalists to interpret and report on such agricultural research.


With a good and ground knowledge about the agriculture and farming communities, a journalist can act like a catalyst in the field of agricultural development. It is very unfortunately that very few media people know about the alarming issues like food security, biodiversity and climate change affects. We know that agricultural extension is almost dead in many countries, so farmers have to depend on the media to deliver information. Secondly the media can also provide a platform through which the farmers can engage with policymakers, so that their perspectives can be taken on board. Thirdly the media can also profile the work of farmers so that lessons and experiences can be shared.


I would say their essential role is as a catalyst, to facilitate a link between farmers and scientific information. This information is available but it does not circulate. Why? Because the media does not know that this information exists and the farmers don\'t have the tools to access it. You have to ensure that all agricultural projects have journalists or media people as stakeholders in the process, and that provision should be made for them, like you make provision for other members of the team. The media needs to be engaged more as a partner at the beginning, during the work and at the end and not as a special invitee to events, seminars and openings.


One of the major challenges is resource constraint. If the media have to go to the rural areas to cover agriculture, it is very costly. I think the other major problem is really that of capacity. The media are not built to fully understand this complex issue that we are dealing with i.e. agriculture and rural development. I think the essential constraints are the lack of resources for the media, but it is not only a question of financial reward. The journalists are not specialized enough: they do not know rural issues and are not close to the farmers.



It could be useful to train more reporters in local areas because it is a big constraint for reporters that they cannot travel to certain places. So that instead of people travelling, people could just connect to reporters at a local place, maybe by phone or through the internet. We need to have more forums where the media engages with the policymakers, because policymakers don\'t usually understand the role of the media. They think the media is just supposed to be public relations, whereas our role is more than that. I would say that the national governments should promote rural and agricultural development in a more active, concrete way e.g. to give the necessary equipment and financial rewards to the media, to go and report on agricultural subjects.


Many times journalists just report and report. If someone come and get a story from a farmer, he will give a very good story. Tomorrow another person will come and if he doesn\'t see returns farmer will say you are wasting my time. So we should make sure there is a feedback to the farmer and not just to extract from them. Sort of like a win-win situation. In short media can play a key role in the agricultural and rural development. Media people should come forward and raise the issues related to the agriculture, food security and climate change affects.






Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/journalism-articles/agricultural-development-and-role-of-media-4292613.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). Author had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds.

Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF)




Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF)


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Preamble


The Congo Virus was first traced, in 1946, in Crimean and later in Congo. It was then named Crimean Congo Virus. Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is life-threatening disease caused by Nairovirus of genus Bunyavirus caused by tick bite of Hayalomma species or by direct contact of the blood/sera of the patient and animals suffering from this disease. Epidemics have been occurring in Balochistan province of Pakistan and neighboring Afghanistan and Iran from time to time with high mortality. Because of the virus, the infected person suddenly becomes ill with fever, dizziness, neck pain, aching muscles and stiffness, and recurrent headaches within a few days. Soon, after vomiting and diarrhea have set in, the volume of blood platelets falls, causing the blood to be unable to clot properly. The bleeding then begins from the gums, from under the skin, in the nose and other natural orifices. Without treatment, a patient can literally bleed to death. Victims usually die within two weeks of infection.


Introduction of the disease in Pakistan


In Pakistan it was first detected when a surgeon of Rawalpindi General Hospital, Abdul Mateen Siddiqui, had infected while operating a patient. The doctor, ward boy, patient and his father all had died in a single incident. In the year 2000, most of the VHF infection cases occurring in Pakistan were from Balochistan province. However, few cases were reported from NWFP and Sindh provinces.


Transmission and out break


It is likely that CCHF virus was transmitted by physical contact with cases or their body fluids in the Quetta outbreak. Airborne transmission is even more unlikely. The possibility of airborne transmission in animals has been noted and used to justify protective measures. Percutaneous exposure posed the highest risk of transmission, which is consistent with data on other viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF). However, current VHF management guidelines recommended caution with body fluids such as blood, excreta, vomit, sweat and saliva especially for patients with respiratory symptoms or in latter stages of illness characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, hemorrhagic and shock.

Diagnosis and Control

That fatal fever can be controlled if diagnosed in the initial phase and can even be treated by administering the anti-viral ribavirin drug. Since the country lacks diagnostic facilities on viral diseases, a doctor should be able to distinguish Congo fever with the ordinary fever, so that he or she puts the patient on the medicine. Majority of Pakistan\'s general practitioners, however, are not trained to make clinical diagnosis of Congo fever, whose initial symptoms resemble that of ordinary flu.


The government of Balochistan established a CCHF treatment center at Fatima Jinnah Hospital Quetta after confirmed reports of death of few cases suffering from illness like CCHF in Pishin District. The doctors, paramedics, health workers and general public were informed about the significance of early detection and treatment of this disease through media, advertisement in local newspapers and with an advice to refer all such cases to the center for free treatment.


Ribavirin is a costly medicine, which cannot be afforded for every patient in Pakistan. Ribavirin has been shown to have activity in-vitro against CCHF virus in concentrations as low as ug/ml5. The intravenous preparation is recommended for treatment of viral hemorrhagic fevers and oral form for post exposure prophylaxis. Oral Ribavirin was also shown to be effective in patients with less severe disease.


CCHF mainly occurs in remote rural communitiesand it was a rare disease in Pakistan but now it is spreading in different drought affected areas of the country and the virus also has access to the cities through animals.


The doctors say that minimum mortality rate in CCHF is 60 per cent. The treatment of the disease is very expensive, and one course of anti-viral drugs costs $ 100 and the course of injection costs $ 10,000. The injections had been administered to every suspected patient, which were provided by National Institute of Health (NIH). The tests for the detection of the disease are very expensive and the facility is not available in Pakistan. The South African Laboratories testing is considered extremely reliable and the World Health Organization (WHO) only accepts the tests from South African P-3 laboratories, which are considered best in the world.




Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/environment-articles/crimean-congo-hemorrhagic-fever-cchf-4319706.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). Author had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds. The author have the experience of livestock keeping, breeding and healthcare with both indigenous and modern knowledge. He had been working with the pastoral people for last 10 years, while motivating livestock keepers for their rights and access to grazing lands under the patronage of SAVES. Ahthor had been delivering training to the livestock keepers in remote for vaccination, drenching and other valuable practices. He is the author of the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol, which serves for the rights of the pastoral people under the ABS and work for the implementation of the Article J8 of the CBD. He is also the author of the indigenous livestock breeds, livestock production systems of the tribal people and indigenous knowledge in Balochistan province, Cholistan and Thar Desert of the Great Indian Desert. He had been traveling with the Afghan nomads (Kochis) to work and document their indigenous knowledge of livestock husbandry.



Author organized camel scientists and herder in Pakistan and founded Camel Association of Pakistan. Recently in Jan. 2010, we organized 3 days livestock keepers meeting under the patronage of SAVES and discussed the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol and organized an organization with the name of Indigenous Livestock Breeders Association (ILBA).
He has already presented many international research presentations at various occasions.Dr Abdul Raziq had visited many countries and research stations.

Camel under threat




Camel under threat


Author:

Dr Abdul Raziq
Camel is very precious animal genetic resource of the drylands and playing pivotal role in the livelihood earning of the pastoral people of that region. Camel is a miracle and precious gift of Allah. Camel has all the characteristics alone which are scattered in almost all other livestock species and even plants. The importance of camel already explained in the previous article published in Articlebase.com. http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/a-unique-and-fascinating-creature-the-camel-4217611.html


In spite of the all the characteristics and peculiarities, camel are never addressed while formulating policies for the agricultural and rural development of the dry lands. It is very unfortunately that such a well adapted livestock like camel is neglected especially in the circumstances of desertification, climate change and global warming scenario. Some breeds of camel, under very minimum external in puts and ordinary grazing systems produce more than 30 kg of milk. Camel is an efficient machine which produces milk with a very low consumption of energy and proteins. Camels have true potential to combat the creeping desertification and global warming. It is a guarantee for safe quality food for the coming decades and centuries.


The situation for camel is now very miserable. This precious animal is under threat. There are many reasons for this sad state of situation but all are manmade. Negligence about the importance of camel and considering it as an old fashion are the main drivers for threatening camel development and production. I think the camel issue is not a country\'s issue. It is a regional issue i.e. the camel is pushed in large number to Iran from Pakistani Balochistan by smugglers. They don\'t bother about sex and physiological status. Many of them are pregnant. The number of camels is speedily decreasing in Pakistan, though our grey records don\'t correspond with this sad situation. The same is a dilemma in Afghanistan and India. Only in India, camel population dropped steeply within 10 years by about 50 The situation in Pakistan, especially Balochistan is not different from that. The best milk producing breeds of camel in Pakistan are Kharani and Brela. Kharani breeds is highly smuggled to Iran while Brela breed from Thar and Cholistan desert had been exported at large scale to Arabian rich gulf countries.


Unfortunately, one gets the impression that there has been not much development on this and that no donor has taken up this issue, although the camel is about the best thing that could happen to humanity as a means of adaptation to climate change and decreasing groundwater resources. Furthermore, the health benefits for Diabetes patients also make its milk a prime marketable good. Thousands of really marginalized people could contribute to food security and develop an economic perspective, if they received support with setting up value chains and marketing arrangements. Unfortunately, in the absence of such support, it is only cash-rich countries or private investors who can reap the benefits. The Arabian Gulf countries are currently trying to buy as many female camels as possible, since their supply of milk cannot match
demand, especially with demand for camel milk powder to make chocolate. It would be a tragedy if countries such as India, Pakistan, Iran and others would sell out their genetic resources that are incredibly valuable assets during climate change and provide livelihoods for rural people who are currently despondent because of lack of economic perspectives..


Suggestions and further innovations


There need to join hands and work on regional basis. SAVES is looking for a regional cooperation on the issue of camel decline. In this connection, value addition to camel milk is one of the key spot to help camel keepers and to conserve breeds. Livestock keepers are the custodian of their breeds and related indigenous knowledge is the basis for sustainable husbandry practices. Both the keepers and ultimately the indigenous knowledge are under threat.



LPPS in India is working on various products (incl. ice cream) and also has test-marketed the milk to local Diabetes patients in Jaisalmer with a good response. Nevertheless, there are many technical problems to be overcome and investments needed - in order to set up a camel dairy and cooling chain.



Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/nature-articles/camel-under-threat-4380961.html
About the Author
Author is the president of the Society of Animal, Vet. and Environmental Scientists (SAVES). Author had been working on the issues of the dry lands and indigenous livestock breeds. The author have the experience of livestock keeping, breeding and healthcare with both indigenous and modern knowledge. He had been working with the pastoral people for last 10 years, while motivating livestock keepers for their rights and access to grazing lands under the patronage of SAVES. Ahthor had been delivering training to the livestock keepers in remote for vaccination, drenching and other valuable practices. He is the author of the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol, which serves for the rights of the pastoral people under the ABS and work for the implementation of the Article J8 of the CBD. He is also the author of the indigenous livestock breeds, livestock production systems of the tribal people and indigenous knowledge in Balochistan province, Cholistan and Thar Desert of the Great Indian Desert. He had been traveling with the Afghan nomads (Kochis) to work and document their indigenous knowledge of livestock husbandry.


Author organized camel scientists and herder in Pakistan and founded Camel Association of Pakistan. Recently in Jan. 2010, we organized 3 days livestock keepers meeting under the patronage of SAVES and discussed the Pashtoon Bio-cultural protocol and organized an organization with the name of Indigenous Livestock Breeders Association (ILBA).
He has already presented many international research presentations at various occasions.Dr Abdul Raziq had visited many countries and research stations.