Competency Improvement Needs of Farmers in Afforestation for Preventing and Controlling Soil Erosion in Kogi State, Nigeria
Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International,
Farmers’ lack of awareness of agricultural activities that contribute to soil erosion and competencies needed to prevent or control the menace through afforestation contributed to unprecedented hardship, the farmers, stakeholders and individuals in Kogi state. The purpose of this study was to determine competency improvement needs farmers in pre-planting, planting and post-planting operations in afforestation and recommend for a way forward in containing the challenges. Three research question and three hypotheses guided the study. The study made use of survey research design; it was carried out in Kogi state. The population for the study was 1,244 made up of 834 registered crop farmers and 410 Agricultural Extension Agents. The sample of the study was 540. A random sampling technique (Balloting) was used to select 330 registered crop farmers out of 834 and 210 Agricultural Extension Agent out of 410 respectively. The instrument for data collection was a 49 items questionnaire titled: Competency Improvement Needs of farmers Questionnaire (CINFQ). The instrument was validated by three experts. Cronbach Alpha method was used to determine the internal consistency of the instrument and a reliability coefficient of 0.82was obtained. Five hundred and forty (540) copies of the questionnaire were administered to the respondents for data collection, but 534 copies were retrieved and analyzed. Weighted mean and Improvement Needed Index (INI) were used to answer the research questions while t-test statistics was used and test hypotheses of no significant difference at the probability of 0.05 level of significance at 532 degree of freedom. It was found out that farmers needed improvement in all the competencies in pre-planting, planting and post-planting operations for enhancing their skills in afforestation practices on their farms and that of their neighbours as a means of reducing the impact of soil erosion in the area of the study. It was recommended that the identified competencies should be used by the extension agents to re-train farmers on the practice of afforestation along with crop production and soil conservation to reduce soil erosion menace in the State.
- improvement needs
- soil erosion
- soil conservation.
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