Transhumance, livestock mobility and mutual benefits between crop and livestock production

Aryal, Suman and Maraseni, Tek and Cockfield, Geoff and de Bruyn, Lisa Lobry (2018) Transhumance, livestock mobility and mutual benefits between crop and livestock production. In: Sustainable agriculture reviews 31: biocontrol. Springer Nature, Switzerland, pp. 25-39. ISBN 978-3-319-94231-5


Grazing-based livestock production, named pastoralism, is classified into nomadism, transhumance and agro-pastoralism. Transhumance is characterised by the seasonal and recurring movement of livestock whereby seasonal grazing areas and routes for livestock movement are fixed. All grazing based livestock production systems including transhumance are constrained globally for a variety of reasons. The major threats to the system are globalisation, nationalisation or privatisation of rangelands, national parks and community forestry policies restricting free grazing and shortage of labour. The collapse or decline of such social-ecological systems (SESs), which have existed for over 1000s years, often induces adverse impacts on societies and ecosystems. Here we review the literature on transhumance, and discuss reasons for transhumance, and the associated advantages and disadvantages of livestock movement in transhumance. Our review also focuses on how the integration of crop and livestock production in transhumance derives mutual benefits. The review indicates that the seasonal movement of livestock is an ecological necessity in areas with harsh climates and low pasture production. Transhumance is also a herders’ adaptive management to adjust to variable grazing resources and environmental conditions. The disadvantages of seasonal movement of livestock
such as greater herding labour required and expenditure of more energy for livestock, are far outweighed by the ecological advantages. Some of these are: to minimise grazing competition and to protect rangeland pastures from being overgrazed. Our review also indicates that the integration of crop and livestock production derives mutual benefits and contributes for their enhanced sustainability.

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Item Type: Book Chapter (Commonwealth Reporting Category B)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published chapter, in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Institute for Agriculture and the Environment
Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2018 05:24
Last Modified: 05 Feb 2019 03:40
Uncontrolled Keywords: pasture, threats, transhumance, review
Fields of Research : 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0703 Crop and Pasture Production > 070399 Crop and Pasture Production not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objective: D Environment > 96 Environment > 9609 Land and Water Management > 960904 Farmland, Arable Cropland and Permanent Cropland Land Management
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