Cheptebo AIC Rural Development Centre, Kerio Valley, Kenya

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         Farm Livestock Production
Dairy Cattle:
Local unimproved dairy cows in the semi arid Kerio Valley yield about 1 litre of milk per day. Since 1988 the Cheptebo Centre has worked to upgrade the level of milk production by introducing pure bred dairy breeds and has also undertaken a programme of cross breeding to improve the productivity of local animals.
The first improved animals introduced in 1988 were purebred Jersey cows. These proved to be very heat tolerant and adapted well to the conditions at Cheptebo. Milk yield was around 10 litres per day and the milk is highly valued for its high butterfat content. Jersey animals from the centre and local animals crossed with Jerseys are now used by local farmers.
Ayrshire breeds were introduced next but these animals did not adapt well to the hot, dry conditions at Cheptebo. Milk yields failed to reach their potential for this breed and did not exceed about 12 litres per day.
Sahiwal cattle are dual purpose animals which are highly tolerant of hot conditions. A Sahiwal bull was purchased initially to cross with local dairy cattle. The resulting offspring are larger that the local animals and produce substantially more milk. The level of management required for their upkeep is not as great as for Jersey or Ayrshire breeds.   
Currently the centre has pure bred Jersey, Sahiwal cross Ayrshire and Sahiwal cross Friesian dairy animals. Milk yields vary between 10 litres/day (Jersey) and about 16 litres/day (Sahiwal X Friesian).

Upgrading Programme.  The centre no longer maintains breeding bulls.

Artificial Insemination services are used for the upgrading programme both at the centre and in the local community.

Availability of Dairy Animals   Surplus dairy animals are normally available for sale . Contact the Farm Manager for further information.  Sorry, due to high demand there are no animals currently available for sale. 
Dairy Goats     Kenya Alpine dairy goats are maintained at the Centre and a large number are now owned by local farmers. To achieve their full potential the animals are maintained under zero grazing conditions. Under good management milk yields are in the range of 2 to 4 litres per day. Females normally produce at least two kids per year and these are in high demand throughout Kenya. Centre staff provides training and ongoing support for dairy goat owners.

Dairy Goat Exchange Scheme  Certain individuals may qualify to receive a dairy goat free under a scheme operated by the centre. Full training and supervision is provided before the animal is allocated and the farmer agrees to return the first two female offspring to the centre. These animals are then used to assist other farmers is similar need.

Availability of Dairy Goats   Dairy Goats are available for sale from the Centre and from local farmers. Contact the Farm Manager for further information.  Sorry, due to high demand there are no animals currently available for sale.


Poultry : Layers and Broilers

The Centre farm has various poultry units for egg and chicken meat production.

The management of both hybrid and local chickens is demonstrated in these units.

Much of the produce from these units goes directly to the kitchens of the Conference Centre.

Rabbit production will also be introduced shortly.

Bee Keeping  The centre maintains a small apiary for demonstration and training purposes. Plans are in hand to establish a larger unit to engage in commercial honey production.