R. Bras. Zootec.11/May/2018;47:e20170230.
Problems of water buffalo breeding in Turkey and suggestions for its development
The objective of the study was to present the current situation of water buffalo breeding in Turkey, determine the relevant problems, and propose suggestions for its improvement. The research data were collected at the “Focus Group Interviews” with the sector actors from the cities engaged in buffalo breeding between July and September of 2015. The cities included Afyonkarahisar, Bitlis, Diyarbakir, Istanbul, Muş, Samsun, and Tokat, where buffalo breeding was usually practiced by small-scale family enterprises that used traditional husbandry methods. The variables chosen as indicators of yield included milk yield, meat yield, and lactation period, which were found to be below global averages. The study revealed lack of adequate record-keeping of enterprises raising water buffalo. Buffalo breeders should take necessary steps to improve their strategies to increase buffalo milk yield, while government agencies should protect wetlands and prevent their unintended use, making relevant legal arrangements where necessary. Buffalo meat and milk should be promoted with an emphasis on their superior nutritional values. For the development of buffalo breeding in Turkey, necessary steps should be taken on both national and local levels.