NARC to develop better breed of cows

Kathmandu, October 8:

The Nepal Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) is all set to develop an elite herd of pure improved breed of cows at Khumaltar in the next few years.

The improved breed of cows will be provided to farmers.

As part of the plan, four calves have been born in the past few weeks through artificial insemination from the first ever bull born through embryo transplantation in Nepal under the Bovine Research Programme of Animal Breeding Division (ABD) conducted by the NARC. Besides, the NARC also has a female calf born through embryo transplantation.

ABD had first transplanted embryo some four years ago and that gave birth to a calf three years ago that was named Shankar. The first ever embryo transplantation was conducted by a professor of the University of Minnesota using the embryo brought from New Zealand.

“This is part of our plan to increase the number of superior breed of cows in the nation for better milk production,” said, senior scientist of the Animal Breeding Division Dr Sriram Neupane. He said the nation is in need of pure breed of Jersey and Holstein-Friesian because they have not been brought to Nepal in the past 25 years.

Dr Neupane said some 15 calves have been born through embryo transplantation in Nepal in the past three years and farmers of Kaski, Rupandehi, Bara and Kathmandu are growing them.

He also said that Nepal has Jersey and Holstein-Friesian as improved breeds, which give some 20 liters of milk a day.

However, seven native breeds of cows identified by the NARC give only one to two liters of milk a day. The cows and bulls of the Valley are all crossbred.

The National Animal Breeding Centre, Pokhara, under the Department of Livestock Services (DLS) has been providing the semen of Shankar and other bulls that were born through embryo transplantation in Nepal.

Dr Neupane said the conception rate of artificial insemination is 40 per cent throughout Nepal while the rate within the Valley is around 60 per cent.