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Improving Livestock Production

The Mali Livestock II Project was a major effort by the Government of the Republic of Mali to improve livestock production and marketing in response to the Sahelian drought in the 1970s.

While placing a top priority on increasing small farmer/herder production beyond the subsistence level, the Mali Livestock II project worked to increase small herder access to agricultural inputs, marketing systems, basic infrastructure, and social services. The Malian government aimed to develop a region not by spreading resources thinly across it, but rather by concentrating efforts in relatively small geographic areas where maximum social and economic impact could be achieved.

Chemonics provided significant technical assistance to this project between 1977 and 1982: 39 different specialists, including up to 14 resident advisors at one time. The project targeted animal husbandry, range management, agricultural engineering, land use economics, agricultural extension, livestock extension, communications accounting, financial management, water resources, feedlot management, protozoology, entomology, business administration, and project management.

The project assisted in a series of post-drought recovery activities in the Sahel, such as range and water management, general livestock production and marketing in the humid central areas of Mali, and a variety of tsetse fly studies to determine the extent of risk and the potentials for development if eradication programs could be undertaken. In the Sahel grazing activity, Chemonics provided advisory services in agricultural engineering and range management covering a large area. Range technicians set up trials for improved grasses needed to upgrade cattle-carrying capacity and retard desertification. Applied research was conducted in improved grazing schemes that could be adopted by nomadic herders and sedentary mixed crop and livestock farmers. Technicians also helped construct ponds, wells, roads, fire- breaks, and markets to upgrade water resources, improve fire control, and improve general infrastructure in the Sahel.

Project Duration: 1977 − 1982.


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