Goats are one of the few important trypanotolerant livestock species in the humid zone of Nigeria. Many households in the zone keep an average of 4-5 goats while larger numbers are kept in the savanna part of the country. The estimated goat population in Nigeria is 24.5million (FAO, 1993) of which 11.5million are found in the humid zone (Ademosun 1992). Goats are predominantly browser/top grazers (Huston, 1998), a trait that enhance their use as a biological control tool in overcoming problems of shrub by weeds and bush encroachment. One major constrain to goat production in Nigeria is the low level of available nutrient and the extent to which feed is available is a limitation to livestock production in Nigeria. (Adegbola,1982; Olubanjo and Oyenuga, 1974). Ruminants form a major component of domesticated livestock (poultry, rabbit, swine and other mini-livestock) throughout the World. In Africa, cattle, sheep and goats are the main types of ruminant. They are crucial source of protein (meat and milk), hide and skin, income, employment opportunity (for the ranchers) and agro-technical benefits among others in Africa.
Small ruminants (sheep and goat) are increasingly becoming a major source of animal protein in Nigeria, contributing over 30% of total meat consumption in the country. Sheep and goats play a significant role in the food chain and overall livelihoods of rural households, where they are largely own by women and their children (Lebbie, 2004). These animals are reared for various reasons such as income generation, traditional and religious purpose, household consumption and hobby as well as security against future crop failure. According to Adu et al., (1996) small ruminants in Southern Nigeria are integral component of the household, where they contribute to the cultural, food and socio-economic life of the people. The potential returns from sheep and goat keeping under the traditional management system are high. In Southwest Nigeria, goats are used for customary rites in addition to meat production and religious purpose (Odeyinka and Ajayi, 2004). It has been documented that sheep and goats are the principal domesticated small ruminants in terms of total numbers and production of food and fibre products (Winrock, 1983). This attribute may partly be due to their lower feed requirements compared to cattle, because of their body size (Okunola et al., 2010). This, however allows for easy integration of small ruminants into different farming systems (Hirpa and Adebe, 2008). Traditionally, sheep and goats serve as means of ready cash and a reserve against economic and agricultural production hardship (Hamito, 2008). Okunlola et al., (2010) reported that majority of small ruminants is owned by individuals or families in rural areas and the number per group is small.
Goat production in Nigeria contributes significantly to the agrarian economy. The West African Dwarf(WAD) breed of goats are predominant in the Southern part of Nigeria, which favors high prevalence of trypanosomiasis because this eco-zone is infected with tsetse fly, however the WAD breeds of goat thrives well and reproduce with twins and triplet births in the ecological niche (Adeloye,1998). The major problems militating against WAD production are genotypes, feeding and management.
The need for increased animal protein production in developing countries like Nigeria cannot be overemphasized. This is because the population of Nigeria is constantly on the increase with over 140million population size according to the recent population census (Frederick et al., 2007). Many Nigerians consume less than 10g of animal protein daily, against the minimum of 28g/caput/day for a balanced diet (Ibe, 2004). Rising demand in animal products should be met by an increase in animal productivity and by further increase in animal number, which means increased production per animal through changes in animal genotypes, better feeding and management (Opara et al., 2005).
The use of fodder trees and shrubs to solve the attendant problems of low productivity in small ruminant production has received research attention in recent times (Paterson et al., 1996; Makkar and Becker 1996; Aregheore 2014). Some indigenous and a limited number of introduced species have been selected to serve as supplements to the low quality forage fed to these animals (Pezo et al., 1991). Most of the trials in the Humid Zone of West Africa(HZWA) conducted by the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and the International Livestock Center for Africa (ILCA) involved Parkia biglobosa.
African locust bean is a medium-sized legume tree that reaches 20-30 m high. It has a dense, widely spreading umbrella-shaped crown and a cylindrical trunk that can reach 130 cm in diameter, often branching low. The bark is longitudinally fissured, scaly between the fissures, thick, ash-grey to greyish-brown in colour. It exudes an amber gum when cut. The leaves are alternate and bipinnately compound, 30-40 cm long, bearing up to 17 pairs of pinnae.
African locust bean is a multipurpose tree. The seeds, pods, fruit pulp and leaves are edible and used as cooking or drinking ingredients. The tree is particularly valued for its fermentescible seeds.
African locust bean trees provide shade for forage grasses and livestock
Cassava peels are major by-products of the cassava tuber processing industry. In parts of Nigeria where cassava is grown and the tubers processed, the peels are largely under exploited as livestock feeds. Cassava peels have been reported to have the following composition: Residual (dry matter) DM 86.5% to 94.5%, OM (Organic matter) 89.0% to 93.9%, Crude protein (CP) 4.2% to 6.5% and Crude fibre (CF) 10.0% to 31.85%. (Adegbola, 1980; Carew, 1982; Onwuka, 1983; and Oyenuga, 1968). While sheep and cattle are able to tolerate cyanide acid at a concentration of 2.5-4.5 ppm per kg of live in weight. In another study also mentioned that the safe consumption of cyanide acid from toxic effects is below 30 ppm. The high content of cyanide acid on cassava peel can lead to potential poisoning in livestock when consumed. However, this cassava peel has a high carbohydrate content that is believed to be useful to fatten livestock.
Hematology: The study of blood in health and disease. It includes problems with the red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, blood vessels, bone marrow, lymph nodes, spleen, and the proteins involved in bleeding and clotting (hemostasis and thrombosis).
Hematological, biochemical, and mineral profiles are important to be determined because they provide valuable information about the breed, sex and animals health status. There is considerable information about the normal parameters of blood of the domestic animal species, but the values are expected to vary according to the breeds, different environmental factors and the different methods of management. The physiological adaptation and the systemic relationship are widely determined using the hematological values.
To evaluate the serum and hematology characteristics of West Africa Dwarf goat fed fresh, witted and dry Parkia biglobosa to a basal diet of cassava peels.
Specific Objectives are:
- To monitor the serum and hematological indices of West African Dwarf goat
- To determine the hematological parameters of West African Dwarf goat fed fresh, witted and dried Parkia biglobosa.
- To determine the hematological parameters of West African goat fed cassava peels
- To evaluate the weight change of animal in response to cassava peels supplemented with Parkia biglobosa