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APIACTA 42 (2007) PAGES 1-15 1 APPRAISING THE PERCEPTION OF FARMING COMMUNITIES TOWARDS ADOPTION OF APICULTURE AS A VIABLE SOURCE OF INCOME IN ADAMAWA STATE, NIGERIA BY MUHAMMAD R. JA’AFAR-FURO, Ph.D DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES, FUFORE LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, ADAMAWA STATE, NIGERIA NOTE:CORRESPONDING ADDRESS: - MAIL:P.O.BOX 5121, YOLA, ADAMAWA STATE, NIGERIA. E-MAIL: jaafarfuro@yahoo.com 1 APIACTA 42 (2007) PAGES 1-15 2 ABSTARCT The survey appraised the perception of members of urban and rural farming communities towards adoption of apiculture as a very profitable farming system in Adamawa State, Nigeria. Opinions from 160 respondents selected through a stratified simple random sampling were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results showed that a larger proportion (30.63%) of the respondents fell between 40 and 49 years, with about 85% as males. While a larger percentage (46.25%) of the farming communities would rather adopt apiculture as a sideline economic activity, majority reported the stinging propensity of the bees (Apis mellifera) as the major constraint to adoption of the farming system. The study recommended a massive introduction of a well-designed extension package that will disengage apiarists and the potential beekeepers from the traditional methods. In this regard, the use of bee-suits and top-bar beehives should be encouraged, among others. Keywords: Adamawa, Adoption, Apiculture, Nigeria, Respondent. INTRODUCTION Farmers have been producing crops and rearing livestock from time immemorial in this part of the globe. For decades, government extension agents have been bringing innovation techniques with the hope of improving crop yields and livestock production, which should result in bettering the economic status of farmers. Yet, reports have always been low output, and complaints of continued impoverishment among these farmers. Remedies have to be sought through experimentation with cost-effective farming systems that have been neglected for quite some time. Apiculture has been appraised in some parts of Nigeria and 2 APIACTA 42 (2007) PAGES 1-15 3 other parts of the world with remarkable success in terms of profitability (Dukku, 2001; Saha, 2003; Farinde et al; 2005; Ja’afar-Furo, 2006). Therefore, the introduction of modern apiculture techniques becomes imperative. However, for the effective popularization of apiculture in the farming communities of both the rural and urban areas, the level of awareness or perception of the farming communities towards apiculture as a viable/profitable source of income and the likely factors as constraints to the adoption of same have to be evaluated. The level of perception of the communities will determine the type of extension strategy/package to adopt. This study is therefore, a step towards this direction. MATERIALS AND METHODS The Study Area Adamawa State is located at the northeastern part of the country. It is mostly an agrarian state with a land size of 39,742.12 square kilometer and a projected (to 2005) population of 3,106,858 using the 1991 National Population Census of the federal republic of Nigeria as a baseline. Major crops grown include rice, maize, sorghum, groundnuts, cowpea, cassava, yams among others, whereas activities like livestock production, apiculture, hunting, fishing, blacksmithing are also observed by a few people. Sampling Procedure and Data Collection The State is made up of 21 Local Government Areas (LGAs) and divided into four (4) agricultural zones based on vegetation and soil type (Adebayo and Tukur, 1999). These 3 APIACTA 42 (2007) PAGES 1-15 4 zones include Central, Northwest, Northeast and Southwest zones. A total of eight (8) LGAs were selected randomly from the zones - Two (2) LGAs from each zone, representing 38.1% of the total LGAs in the state. These LGAs are Yola-south, Fufore, Gombi and Mubi-north. Others are Ganye, Mayo-belwa, Lamurde and Shelleng LGAs. A LGA was divided into two (2) strata. The first stratum, which is the LGA headquarters was regarded the urban community, whereas the second stratum is composed of the district headquarters and termed the rural community. Ten (10) respondents were randomly selected from each stratum from the existing farming clubs, associations or co-operative societies in the respective localities. Therefore, 20 respondents were selected from each LGA and 160 (20 x 8 LGAs) from the whole study area in the year 2005. The services of

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