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Prepared by: Santosh Dhakal B.V.Sc.&A.H.

Institute of Agriculture and Animal Sciences Chitwan, Nepal

Justification of topic
Cattle are important livestock commodity in Nepal. They are mainly raised

for milk, draft and transportation purposes.

Numerically, there are 7.2 million cattle in the country (statistical

information, 2009/10, MOAC).

About 88% of total cattle population is indigenous.
Only 13 % cattle (98,000) are milk producing.

Total milk production of the country is 1.5 million metric ton and share of

cattle to this is only 29% (429,000 MT).

The indigenous cattle population in various ecozones consists of Lulu, Achami,

Siri, Pahari, Khaila, Terai and Yak.

Nepal has great diversity in cattle population, providing variation serving a raw

material for improvement.

However, the indigenous breeds are in danger of extinction due to injudicious

use of crossbreeding program and superiority of cross bred cattle compared to local breeds drawing attention towards keeping those cross bred animals. So, it is a prime necessity to preserve the genetic resource.

But, the productivity of local cattle are less as compared to exotic breeds so it

makes necessity of employing appropriate breeding strategy for upgrading local breeds with exotic breeds suitable for local production environment.
Major exotic breeds (whose crosses are common) of cattle dominating in Nepal

are Jersey and Holstein Friesian. So breeding plan should incorporate one of them.




High mountain of western and eastern terai, Mustang


Western part of hills , Achham district


High areas of eastern region


Found in mountain, hills and terai

Chauri cows

Mountain and hills

Yak and nak

High mountain

why upgrading is necessary ????

Breeds Age at first Age at 1st Gestation service(mth) calving(mth) length(days) Calving Av. Daily Lactation interval (mth) milk yield(lt) length(days)

Lulu Acchmi

42 48


2801.7 2851.8

18 17

1.6.31 1.5.22

195 225

Siri 40 50 Khaila 45 55 Pahadi Terai Yak 48 39.40.5 45.3.65 50.11.1 49.90.46 56.6.75 2751.65 296.1.25 252.21.5 17.61.65 16.3.23 21.3.76 2881.85 18 2.5 1.1 2.1 0.8 246 160 305 2402.1 295.22.2 19.6.9 4.5.22 268.62

Developing breeding plan

Formulation of Breeding Objectives

Deciding what is to achieve ?

The present need of cattle industry of Nepal are : To conserve indigenous genetic resource To increase the milk production with high fat percentage To improve the body configuration To increase the feed efficiency To decrease the generation interval and age of first calving To increase lactation length To reduce calving interval etc.

Choice of breed and breeding system All indigenous breeds of cattle mentioned above for maintaining germ plasm and jersey breed for upgrading. Breeding system The breeding system will involve two steps:
Line breeding of indigenous breeds at their particular production

environment in order to conserve the native germplasm

Cross breeding of selected females of local breed with suitable other exotic

or local breeds as per necessity of the production environment

For bringing exotic breed into the native gene pool the 3 tier breeding scheme will be used.

Nucleus: breeding unit in the exporting country ( for 100%jersey semen)

Multiplier: breeding unit in the country at various ecozones

Producer: producing ( commercial ) unit in the country at particular


Selection of individuals
Selection differential, heritability, genetic gain, selection index and

other parameters will be determined on each generation mainly based on milk production and fat percentage. This increase milk production with higher fat percentage, shorter calving interval, longer lactational yield all has positive economic values. The animals will be evaluated based on its own production and pedigree records, based on milk yield, fat percentage, disease resistance characters. Certain healthy animals, productive (fertile) female animals of local cattle will be the population for improvement and for male; the jersey bulls will be chosen. 5% males will be selected as replacement sire and 50-60% female as replacement heifer

Mating for Selected Animals

Indigenous germplam will be preserved by line breeding

For cross breeding (grading up) all the female cattle selected will be

inseminated by the semen of pure breed jersey bulls or semen of other local breeds as per necessary and progenies will be selected on the basis of breed characters.

For cross breeding with jersey breed repeated back crossing will be

employed to achieve the required blood level i.e. more than 75%

Design System of Expansion

For every breed the line breeding will be carried out on research station or

germplasm conservation centers established at respective ecological zones.

Then, the cross breeding with other suitable local breeds or jersey will be

carried out on the multiplier herd at respective production environment. The animal which will not meet our criteria will be culled out.

Siri breed: siri breed is somewhere said to not exist in Nepal. For this,

identification, characterization is necessary followed by conservation by line breeding then only grading up can be considered. After maintaining pure line of this breed crossing with jersey to maintain 75% blood level of jersey.
Acchami cattle: The genetic improvement strategy for for Acchami cattle

should be dedicated in maintaining purity by line breeding and then at commercial level crossing with hill cattle can be practiced.
For Lulu, Pahadi, Khaila and Terai, line breeding will be done at germpalsm

conservation center established at high mountain ( mustang), hills, mountain and terai region respectively. For commercially improving productivity grading up will be done with jersey semen use by artificial insemination upto 75% blood level for lulu, pahadi and khaila and 87.25% blood level to terai breed.

For yak: Pure-breeding is the predominant practice with yak.

The aim should be to improve the breed for meat and hair. Scores are allocated for aspects of general conformation, the body, testes for

males and udder for females, legs, feet and the coat. Calves and adults are graded to somewhat different criteria. Weight and height classes are designed according to age and sex of animal.
The use of selected breeding bulls is recommended, and newborn animals may be

assigned a grade on the basis of the grades of their parents.

Nucleus herd and multiplier herd scan be established in high Himalayan region

for genetic improvement program.

An example of genetic improvement program and its effect

Lets consider grading up of local cattle breed say, terai and exotic cattle breed

jersey for improving milk production.

The milk production traits are medium to high in heritability in cattle indicating

additive and nonadditive genetic effect both. Progress can be made by selection and breeding.
The cross breeding will be carried to maintain 87.5% blood level of jersey.

3 successive generations crossing of female with 100% pure jersey male will be

carried out at multiplier herd established at different districts of Terai region as per requirement.

Same procedure will be disseminated to commercial level.


TERAI 100%





TERAI 12.5% JERSEY 87.5%

Records available for the population of jersey and local

cattle is




1500 300 0.35 3 years 60%




Generation Interval 2.5 years

Population selected 5%

Genetic gain per generation GG/Gen=95.4kg Total GG/yr =35.9kg milk Herd average = [Av.Production of Dam (for male selection)

+ Av.production of female 2 = 3000 + 1500 2 = 2250 kg Average expected production = herd average + GG\Gen = 2250 + 95.4 =2345.4 Kg Thus, average expected production is 2345.4 Kg.

Conclusion and suggestions:

Nepal has its own diverse genetic material with high variation providing a

raw material for genetic progress.

These indigenous genetic resources have additional benefit of disease

resistance, hardiness and other characters suitable for local environment due to continuous selection pressure imposed by nature itself.
However, these genetic resources are in danger of extinction because of

indiscriminate breeding programs and comparative benefit of other cross bred or pure exotic breeds of cattle. Conserving the native gene pool of cattle breed is the responsibility of government and it should launch an effective program for identification, characterization and preservation of these indigenous genetic resources of cattle.
Line breeding can be considered for improvement of local breeds of cattle by

opening research and germplasm conservation stations at various ecozones.

Commercially, cross bred animals especially with jersey are found to be

beneficial due to their high lactational milk yield. Due to this, cross breeding with Jersey should be carried out as means of upgrading the local cattle.
Governmental sector should formulate proper breeding strategy to address

different ecological zones and breeds available there.

Establishment of multiplier herds at different ecozones may be considered

for ensuring judicious use of breeding program at farmers level to bring white revolution for overall development of country and alleviation of poverty.
Suitable inbreeding strategy should be initiated to conserve gene pool of yak