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Fodder crisis, high prices of other feeds frustrate cattle rearers in flood-hit areas

Rangpur farmers apprehensive of good price of sacrificial animals


Our Correspondent | Published: July 21, 2019 21:34:31


A cattle rearer in the flood-affected Char Dhusmara village under Kawnia upazila in Rangpur district shifting his cattle head to a high land on Sunday — FE Photo

RANGPUR, July 21: The cattle rearers in different areas under Rangpur division are apprehensive about making expected profit this year from the sale of sacrificial animals due to the ongoing flood situation.

As Eid-ul-Azha is drawing nearer the cattle farmers are now passing busy time nurturing the sacrificial animals in different farms and household in Rangpur division.

But they are facing difficulties in preparing sacrificial animals due to acute crisis of fodder and its exorbitant price. Farmers are concerned as cattle rearing cost has increased manifold.

Sources said many areas at different upazilas under Rangpur, Kurigram, Lalmonirhat and Gaibandha districts are affected by the flood badly, caused by torrential rain and onrush of water from the upstream. As a result, cattle farming is facing a serious setback in the flood affected areas, sources also said.

Officials at divisional Livestock Department said around 13,80,000 sacrificial animals are ready in the division for the upcoming Eid-ul-Azha. These include 0.9 million cows and buffaloes and 4,80,000 goats and  sheep at around 14,000 small and large farms and different households.

Besides meeting local demand, a huge quantity of sacrificial animals are expected to be supplied to different areas of the country, sources further said.

With the hope to earn a good profit the cattle farmers under the region geared up nurturing sacrificial animals with much enthusiasm but flood shattered their hope, making them disheartened, sources said.

Owing to dearth of green fodder, prices of hay, oilcakes, wheat bran and other fodders have also increased, it is alleged. A good number of farmers said that they are being forced to sell their cattle at lower prices, as rearing of the same has become so difficult for them.

Acute scarcity of fodder has turned into a crisis as grass fields in many areas have been inundated by the recent flash flood, it is learnt. For lack of green grass and the high price of substitutes like hay, oilcake and wheat bran, I had to sell some of my cows," said, Suja Mia of Mahipur village under Gangachara upazila in Rangpur district. Lack of shelter for the animals is also a big concern for the rearers, he added.

According to sources, presently, per maund of hay is being sold between Tk 900 to Tk 1200 in local markets while the same quantity of fodder was sold between Tk 250 and Tk 300 before.

Expressing disappointment a number of cattle farmers alleged that owing to scarcity of feed their cattle are getting feeble and thin. They might not get expected price from the sale of such unattractive sacrificial animals.

Divisional Livestock Office sources said severe fodder crisis has been prevailing in many areas of the region due to flash flood. The crisis is expected to be resolved if flood situation becomes normal and new grasses start to grow, sources added.

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