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Abstract

The migratory and socio-economic aspects of sheep and goat flock-owners have been studied to examine yield, cost, income and employment in migratory sheep and goat production system in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh for the year 2001-02. A direct relation has been revealed between flock-size and resource endowments. Human labour has been found as the major cost component in the maintenance of this production system. Although, the contribution of sheep-rearing has been found higher to gross income, rearing of goats generates markedly higher income than of sheep on per animal basis. The flock business and family labour income in this system have been observed impressive and net income has been rated meagre for small flock-owners and nominal for large ones. This system has provided enough employment opportunities to family as well as hired labour. The existing breeds have been found good in terms of quality and quantity of meat, disease resistance and reproduction. The disease management technologies have been reported satisfactory, but medical facilities are not available at higher altitudes. The fodder availability at foothills and in plains during the winter season has been perceived as a major constraint, while the other constraints have been lack of marketing and processing infrastructure, low prices of output, high morbidity rate and wild animal attack. To enhance the profitability and sustainability of this system in the long-run, the study has suggested that the flock-owners need to be educated about the importance of timely vaccination and feeding of concentrate, roughages and feed supplements to the animals, specially during the winter season.

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