Monday, December 01, 2008

Vudal turns Warongoi land into pasture

Captions: 1. Cattle at Warongoi. 2. The Warongoi River

University of Vudal in the East New Britain province is turning government-owned land at Warongoi into grazing land for cattle and buffalo.

The university also has plans to turn the land - on the banks of the Warongoi River - into a place where pigs, ducks, sheep, goat and fish can be raised.

Planning is underway for a pump to run water from the Warongoi River, which will cost about K50, 000.

AusAID, through the Agricultural Innovations Grant Scheme (AIGS), has already made a commitment for K168, 000 for farmer training for drought animals.

Animal science lecturer Gitala Pranis revealed these plans after an extensive tour of the area.

“Warongoi is State land,” he explained.

“It was originally under Department of Agriculture and Livestock for training of buffalo for drought purposes.

“It became rundown.

“In 2006, a memorandum of agreement between Department of Agriculture and Livestock and Vudal was signed, that’s how all this came about.”

 Mr Gitala said one of Vudal’s aims was to raise breeding stock, especially cattle and cow.

“Weaners will be kept at the main campus for fattening,” he said,

“Apart from weaners, we also want to raise drought animals, especially cattle and buffalo.

“At the moment, we have 50 breeding stock with five fully-developed paddocks.

“We have 40 calves.

“We concentrate on breeding.

“The total land area at Warongoi is 185 hectares.

“It will be developed into paddocks.

“We also have plans for livestock like pigs, ducks, sheep, goat and aquaculture.

“We already have an abattoir on the main campus.

“At the same time, it’s good practical experience for the students in areas like pasture, fencing, husbandry, and so on.

“We have only developed 40 hectares.

“When we fully develop the area we are looking at 200 breeding stock.”

Mr Gitala said the project currently had 10 permanent staff and 20 casuals.

“The potential is there but we need the money,” he said.



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