Bhubaneswar, Sep 10 :
The cattle population in Odisha has declined by 5.59 percent to 11,621,272 against 12,309,000 in 2007, according to the latest livestock census, an official said Wednesday.
“The decline is mostly due to farm mechanization,” secretary of the state’s fishery and animal resources development department Bishnupada Sethi told IANS.
“However, the number of unproductive animals has reduced and they are being replaced by more productive animals for which female, cross-bred animals are on the rise in the state,” he said.
“Cross-bred animals, especially males, are not taken care of. As a result of which their population has decreased. Even cross-bred milch animals are being sold by farmers to neighbouring states like Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand,” he said.
“Cattle population includes cross-bred and indigenous cattle. While the cross-bred population declined by 23.53 percent, the indigenous cattle population has reduced marginally by 2.74 percent,” he maintained.
“Then again, due to shrinkage of common grazing resources, herd size in individual households are also decreasing,” he said.