Establishment of Climate Resilient Cattle Sheds For Better Livestock Production

Dr. Mandeep Singh
Dr. Mandeep Singh

Punjab is one of the most important contributors and front-runner in white revolution in the country. It ranks 5th in milk production among all the Indian states. This could be due to an increased production of milk in Punjab due to technological change in breeding and feeding practices. In Punjab, approximately 70% of the production comes from the bovine stock and their milk, when crops fail.

In relation to it, however, global warming resulted to varied intensity of climate events that has lead to warmer and more intense summers. This had substantial impact on livestock productivity and therefore declined animal products such as milk because of high mortality and competition for limited fodder and water resources. With rise in temperature and humidity, stress in animals has been increased leading to the incidence of various animal diseases. It is also believed that a rise in temperature by 2-4 °C will cut milk production by more than 15 million tons, according to India’s communication to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. So, it is important to manage the heat stress in animals for achieving sustainable milk production to prevent such conditions.

Considering immediate challenges for sustainability of milk productivity and reproduction as extreme temperature occurrences are likely to prevail in summers in future, it is necessary to manage animal production for small and marginal farmers. Therefore, a project titled “Climate Resilient Livestock Production System in Punjab” is being run by “National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change (NAFCC)” with an objective to enhance the livestock production under heat stress conditions in a climate friendly housing and environment. National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is the supervising firm for the project that has sanctioned Rs 17.398 crore for the project duration of five years. This project is helpful in providing eco-friendly environment to animals that would help in increasing productivity of animals and thus helping the farmers to boost their financial status.

In Punjab, as per the statistics, the districts of Tarn Taran, Bathinda and Ludhiana recorded temperatures in excess of 40oC and in 2015, they recorded around 45oC. This project however has been started in 3 districts of Punjab i.e. Bathinda, Ludhiana and Taran taran as extreme changes of temperature has been mostly seen in these districts. This project will help 3000 small and marginal farmers with landholding of 1-2 hectares and having 5-10 dairy animals. The other aim of this project is also the participation of women in which about 30% beneficiaries would be women. For achieving this aim, in districts of Bathinda, Ludhiana and Taran taran, cattle sheds harboring 10 and 5 ((Fig.1 and Fig.2) animals would be constructed in selected villages of these districts. Innovative 300 climate resilient sheds (100 sheds each in 3 districts) at the farmer’s level and 10-15 demonstrative sheds at government institution level will be constructed.

The design for these animal sheds has been prepared by Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU), Ludhiana, Punjab. For this, the farmers must have their own land and at least minimum 5-6 indigenous breed animals. Along with this, the government has also proposed 75% subsidy on the total cost of construction of these sheds. Besides this, a set of 10 trainings would be carried out on pre-insemination and post-insemination of cattle across 100 villages of project districts.

Project impacts:

  • The indigenous dairy animals like Murrah/ Nili Ravi buffaloes and Sahiwal cattle would be improved by artificial insemination through superior germplasm in Punjab.

  • The problem of repeat breeding in buffaloes and cattle would be reduced as the animals are kept under climatic controlled environment.

  • The project involves sustained livestock productivity throughout the year through technologies such as Artificial insemination and Estrus management, targeting small and marginal farmers.

  • Heat tolerant cattle sheds will be designed to enhance the livestock performance during heat stress conditions. The sheds will also be made tick free, which is one of the major concerns affecting the cattle health in Punjab.

  • This project also proposes development of a model cattle pond with climate resilient features for 2000 stray cattle in one district of Punjab (Tarn Taran). The gaushala/cattle pond will have provisions of drought resistant fodder, water through rainwater harvesting structures, solar energy through setting up solar plants, biogas generation through setting up bio-gas plants.

  • This activity will mainly prevent the animals from the risk due to existing and emerging diseases. A disease forecasting system providing a correlation between disease occurrence and changes in climate and vegetation cover etc will be developed in line with the National disease forecasting system ‘National Animal Diseases Referral Expert System (NADRES)’.

  • Punjab would be the pioneer state to develop weather linked insurance for assessing compensation to the small and marginal farmers due to loss in livestock yield. It has been proposed that technical support from an Insurance Agency will be taken for designing the product.

Success story:

One 10 animal shed was constructed for owner Sh. Raja Singh S/o Balwant singh, V.P.O. Chak Ram Singh Wala, Distt. Bathinda, Punjab. His farm was visited and the owner was contacted for the benefits of the shed. He said that he had 5 buffaloes and 2 cattle to be reared under this shed. Earlier he was facing the problem of various diseases like mastitis, ticks etc and his shed was constructed with no proper shed orientation. But now with these sheds, the farmer had observed that the problem of tick infestation and repeat breeding was reduced on his farm and milk production was also improved. This could be due to the climatic controlled shed.


Dr. Mandeep Singh

Veterinary Officer, Veterinary Polytechnic & Regional Research Training Centre,

Kaljharani, Bathinda

Share your comments

FactCheck in Agriculture Project

Subscribe to our Newsletter. You choose the topics of your interest and we'll send you handpicked news and latest updates based on your choice.

Subscribe Newsletters