Open Access Original Research Article

Evaluation of Pearl millet Varieties for Adaptation to the Semi-Arid Agro-Ecology of Northern Ghana

R. A. L. Kanton, P. Asungre, E. Y. Ansoba, Baba I.Y. Inusah, J. K. Bidzakin, Mutari Abubakari, P. Toah, L. Haggan, C. Totoe, F. A. Akum

Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International, Page 1-11
DOI: 10.9734/JAERI/2015/14640

Field trials were conducted at the Manga Agricultural Research Station near Bawku in the Upper East Region to evaluate nine genotypes of Pearl millet [Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.] for adaptation to the Sudan Savanna agro-ecology of northern Ghana. The varieties are: Arrow, Bongo Short Head, Bristled millet. SOSAT-C88, Tongo Yellow, GB 8735, ICTP 8203, B9_Tabi and Manga Nara a local check (farmers’ variety). The experiment was established as a randomized complete block design with 4 replicates. All standard agronomic practices and data as recommended for Pearl millet production in Ghana were adhered to. The results indicate highly significant (P<0.001 differences among years and genotypes for all the traits recorded. The local variety Manga Nara was the earliest to reach 50% flowering; whilst SOSAT-C88 was the latest. Downy mildew incidence at 30 days after sowing was least on SOSAT-C88 and ICTP 8203 and highest on the farmers’ variety. At maturity downy mildew incidence was highest on Tongo Yellow. Bristled Millet produced the tallest plants whilst Manga Nara, Bongo Short Head and GB 8735 produced the shortest plants. Bongo Short Head produced the broadest spikes whilst B9_Tabi gave the longest spikes. Pearl millet harvest indices were generally low with Arrow and ICTP 8203 producing the highest and GB 8735; Bongo Short Head and the farmers’ variety the lowest. ICTP 8203, SOSAT-C88 and Bristled Millet recorded higher grain yields than the other genotypes evaluated. The farmers’ variety, GB 8735 and B9_Tabi recorded the lowest grain yields compared to the trial mean. SOSAT-C88 produced superior straw yield compared to the other genotypes whilst Tongo Yellow; the farmers’ variety, Arrow and GB 8735 produced appreciably lower straw yields. ICTP 8203, SOSAT-C88 and Bristled Millet were the most efficient whilst the farmers’ variety was the least efficient in rainwater capture and use.

Open Access Original Research Article

Concentrations of Cadmium, Copper, Lead and Zinc in Soils and Vegetable Organs from Periurban Agriculture Areas of Abidjan in Cote d’Ivoire

Thierry Philippe Guety, Brahima Kone, Guy Fernand Yao, Nestor Yao Kouakou, Albert Yao-Kouame

Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International, Page 12-23
DOI: 10.9734/JAERI/2015/15140

Production quality in periurban agriculture is question mark regarding to soil potential contamination affecting yields. The level of contaminations of soils and vegetables by copper (Cu), zinc (Cu), cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) around Abidjan city were assessed. Survey was conducted in 2013 within cultivated areas of sweet potato and Hibiscus locally named “Dah” as encountered in three locations of Abidjan district (Port-Bouët, Yopougon and Bingerville) according to the intensities of industrial and commercial activities of which, Bingerville was the control site with lowest activities. Soil (0 – 20 cm) samples associated to that of plants (leaf, stem and root) were taken randomly for laboratory analysis. Toxic levels (> 8 mgkg-1) of Pb were significantly (p< .0001) determined in plant organs from Port-Bouët site indifferently to crops while, lower soil content of Pb (35.5 mgkg-1) than that of Yopougon (39.8 mgkg-1) was observed, however. Except the synergisms observed between leave concentration of Pb and soil contents of Cd, Cu and Zn, non of soil parameters were relevant for this while, the proximity of inland waters was suspected. The partitioning of Pb in plant organs pointed out phytoremediation potential of Hibiscus with lowest risk of toxicity (2.92 – 9.72 mgkg-1) in edible leave against an average of 8.08 mgPbkg-1 in the tuber of sweet potato. For strengthening consistence of knowledge, studies of Pb and Zn interaction as well as Pb translocation in tuber plants of tropical ecosystems were suggested.

Open Access Original Research Article

Determinants of the use of Indigenous Coping Strategies against Climate Change among Smallholder Farmers in Katsina State, Nigeria

S. Umar, M. W. Musa

Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International, Page 24-32
DOI: 10.9734/JAERI/2015/14785

Aims: This study assessed the indigenous coping strategies employed by smallholder farmers in response to adverse effects of climate change in Katsina State and the factors that determine the use of such strategies.
Place and Duration of Study: The research was carried out in Ajiwa and Dutsinma zones of Katsina State Agricultural and Rural Development Authority. The study was initiated in March, 2013 and ended in April, 2014.
Methodology: A sample of 200 farmers was randomly selected from a sample frame of 1332 irrigation farmers. Structured interview and focus group discussion were employed for data collection. The data obtained were analyzed using descriptive statistics, coping strategy index and regression analyses.
Results: Age of respondents, total land size, total annual income and years of membership of farmers’ cooperatives were found to be positively related to the use of indigenous coping strategies against climate change and significant at 1% probability. The constraints to the effective use indigenous coping strategies against climate change were identified to be: Poverty (identified by 87.5% of the respondents), poor record keeping and documentation (84%), poor access to information on climate change (72%), low level of education (59.5%), uncertainty in the agricultural enterprises due to reliance on natural conditions (46.5%), land tenure system (39%) and inadequate physical and social infrastructure in the rural areas (29.5%).
Conclusion: Despite the constraints hindering effective use of indigenous coping strategies among smallholder farmers in the study area, they were able to, over time, develop and fine-tune such strategies.

Open Access Original Research Article

Assessing Biotic and Abiotic Constraints to Upland Rice Cultivation in Cameroon

F. A. Ngome, D. Mepiemfu-Lamare, P. I. Tata, C. Suh

Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International, Page 33-40
DOI: 10.9734/JAERI/2015/15260

A study was conducted to investigate the major biotic and abiotic production constraints of upland rice varieties in the three rice development hubs of Cameroon. Fifty randomly selected farmers from each rice hub namely Ndop, Lagdo and Mbam were interviewed using a structured questionnaire. On-farm visits and group discussions with other rice farmers were used to substantiate information obtained from the individually interviewed farmers. It was observed that NERICA 3 and NERICA 8 were the dominant varieties widely cultivated by farmers with an average productivity of <1.0 t/ha. Birds, weeds, low soil fertility, disease and drought were the main culprits limiting upland rice production. The contribution of these constraints to total yield loss varied significantly (p<0.05) across the rice hubs and ranged from 10% to 40%. Several agronomic, chemical and physical control measures were used by farmers to address these constraints but the most innovative strategy was the use of plastic hawks to mimic normal hawks that are predators to birds. It is recommended that researcher-farmer trials should be conducted to facilitate the effective transfer of upland rice technology to farmers, particularly with respect to variety use, fertilizer application and harvesting time. This will undoubtedly facilitate adoption of upland rice technology and hence boost rice production in Cameroon.

Open Access Original Research Article

Local Livelihood of Adjoining Communities in Yankari Game Reserve, Bauchi-Nigeria

I. Umar, M. B. Abdullahi, A. G. Ezra, L. Auwalu

Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International, Page 41-48
DOI: 10.9734/JAERI/2015/14267

Aim: To Investigate the local livelihood of Adjoining communities of Yankari Game Reserve (YGR) Bauchi, Bauchi state-Nigeria.
Study Design: Survey design was used for the study.
Place and Duration of the Study: Study was conducted in four communities bordering the protected area between January and March, 2014.
Methodology: Structured questionnaire was used on twenty (20) households in each of the four communities (N= 80) to generate data on socio-economic characteristics of the communities. Data was analyzed using simple percentage and Pearson correlation.
Results: The study revealed predominant youth population in the communities (43.7-49.1%) with high illiteracy level (50.7-84.1%) and farming as the major occupation (75-90%). Very low income was observed with monthly earnings between N5, 000 – N10, 000= (about $31-$62) per month per household. 90-100% households use firewood as means of energy for cooking and heating and 75-95% of households live in mud/thatch houses that require frequent reconstructions with woods. There was no significant relationship, statistically, between education and income in all the communities except Mainamaji that showed slight inverse relationship (P 0.055). On occupation and income, only Mainamaji suggested positive relationship (P0.273).
Conclusion: Socio-economic status of the support zone communities is, generally, very low.