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Morphological characterization of the Azikheli buffalo in Pakistan

  • M. Khan (a1), I. Rahim (a2), H. Rueff (a3) (a4), S. Jalali (a5), M. Saleem (a1), D. Maselli (a6), S. Muhammad (a1) and U. Wiesmann (a3)...

Summary

This study aims to characterize Azikheli, an undocumented buffalo breed, in its home tract (Khwazakhela, Swat, Pakistan) under traditional farming conditions. For this purpose, 108 buffalo cows and 27 bulls were randomly selected. Mean, standard error, Student's t test and Chi-square test were used for various comparisons. The results show that the majority of animals have a brown coat colour. Cows have significantly higher heart girths, longer horns, longer necks and wider faces at the level of the eyes than bulls, whereas bulls have significantly longer bodies, longer ears, thicker horns, thicker necks and larger hooves than cows. Horns are flat laterally, directed backwards and then slightly upwards without twisting, leading to a sickle to semi-sickle appearance. Owing to its small body size and brown coat colour, the breed is well adapted to mountain slope grazing and thrives well away from swamps. Its adaptation to mountainous ecosystems warrants its in situ conservation.

Cette étude cherche à caractériser la race de buffle non documentée Azikheli dans son territoire d'origine (Khwazakhela, Swat, Pakistan) sous les conditions d'élevage traditionnelles. Pour ce faire, 108 bufflonnes et 27 mâles ont été sélectionnés au hasard. La moyenne, l'erreur type, le test de Student et le test du Khi-carré ont été utilisés pour faire plusieurs comparaisons. Les résultats montrent que la plupart des animaux ont un pelage brun. Les vaches ont, significativement, une circonférence thoracique plus grande, des cornes et des cous plus longs et une face plus large au niveau des yeux, par rapport aux mâles. Par contre, les mâles ont, significativement, des oreilles et des corps plus longs, des cornes et des cous plus gros et des onglons plus grands que ceux des bufflonnes. Les cornes partent horizontalement vers les côtés puis se dirigent vers l'arrière et finalement montent sans se tordre, ce qui fait que les cornes aient l'aspect d'une faucille ou demi-faucille. En raison de sa petite taille corporelle et de la couleur brune de son pelage, la race est bien adaptée au pâturage sur les flancs des montagnes et se développe bien en dehors des zones marécageuses. Son adaptation aux écosystèmes montagneux garantit sa conservation in-situ.

Este estudio pretende caracterizar el ganado Azikheli, una raza de búfalos no documentada, en su área de origen (Khwazakhela, Swat, Pakistán) y bajo condiciones de cría tradicionales. Con este fin, se seleccionaron aleatoriamente 108 búfalas y 27 machos. Se usaron la media, el error estándar, la prueba t de Student y la prueba Chi-cuadrado para realizar múltiples comparaciones. Los resultados muestran que la mayoría de los animales presentan una capa de color marrón. Las vacas tienen, significativamente, mayores circunferencias torácicas, cuernos y cuellos más largos y la cara más ancha a la altura de los ojos, en comparación con los toros. Sin embargo, los toros tienen, significativamente, cuerpos y orejas más largos, cuernos y cuellos más gruesos y pezuñas más grandes que las vacas. Los cuernos parten de forma horizontal hacia los lados para a continuación dirigirse hacia atrás y después ligeramente hacia arriba sin retorcerse, con lo que adquieren un aspecto de hoz o semi-hoz. Debido a su pequeño tamaño corporal y al color pardo de su capa, la raza está bien adaptada al pastoreo en las laderas de montaña y se desarrolla bien fuera de las zonas pantanosas. Su adaptación a ecosistemas montañosos garantiza su conservación in-situ.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence to: M. Khan, Directorate General (Extension) Livestock and Dairy Development Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Peshawar, Pakistan. email: khankoper@yahoo.com

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Keywords

Morphological characterization of the Azikheli buffalo in Pakistan

  • M. Khan (a1), I. Rahim (a2), H. Rueff (a3) (a4), S. Jalali (a5), M. Saleem (a1), D. Maselli (a6), S. Muhammad (a1) and U. Wiesmann (a3)...

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