Introduction of ox-drawn weeders in Maswa District, Shinyanga

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					                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ruben R Mungroop, Omari H Bori and Masanja Kalabo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Introduction of ox-drawn weeders in Maswa District, Shinyanga Region, Tanzania




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Introduction of ox-drawn weeders in Maswa District,
This paper is published in: Starkey P and Simalenga T (eds), 2000. Animal power for weed control. A resource book of the Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa (ATNESA). Technical Centre for




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Shinyanga Region, Tanzania
               Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, The Netherlands. ISBN 92-9081-136-6. For details of ATNESA and its resource publications see http://www.atnesa.org




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        by

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Ruben R Mungroop*, Omari H Bori and Masanja Kalabo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Maswa District Rural Development Programme, PO Box 313, Maswa, Tanzania

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Abstract                                                                                                                                    Maswa District lies between latitudes 2.45º and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Until recently, plowing was the only                                                                                                        3.15º south and longitudes 33.0º and 34.7º east.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  mechanised agricultural operation in the                                                                                                    Altitude is about 1200–1300 m and rainfall
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Maswa District of Tanzania. Weeding has been                                                                                                between 600 and 1000 mm per year.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  done by hand, mainly by women and children.                                                                                                 Deforestation accompanied by soil erosion is
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Although large areas have been planted, many                                                                                                causing environmental degradation problems.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  fields have not been adequately weeded, and                                                                                                 The district is divided into three administrative
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  resulting yields have been low.                                                                                                             divisions with 18 wards and 77 villages. The
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  A survey by the Farming System Research team                                                                                                1988 census registered 221 194 people and a
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  based at Ukuriguru showed that the single most                                                                                              growth rate of 2.3% per year. The estimated
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  important constraint to achieving higher crop                                                                                               population in 1993 was about 247 200 people
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  yields was labour for weeding. The Maswa                                                                                                    with approximately 80 000 farm households.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  District Council took steps to alleviate this                                                                                               Most of the people belong to the Sukuma tribe.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  problem. A farm mechanisation expert made an                                                                                                Agriculture and livestock keeping are the main
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  extensive tour throughout Tanzania to assess                                                                                                occupations. The main food crops are sorghum,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  problems with the use of ox-drawn implements.                                                                                               maize, rice, sweet potatoes and groundnuts,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Consequently five types of weeders were                                                                                                     with smaller amounts of millet, cowpeas and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  purchased. Farmers made a selection after                                                                                                   cassava. Cotton and rice are the major cash
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  testing these weeders and named the weeder                                                                                                  crops. The total bovine population is about
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  they considered most suitable for their area the                                                                                            300 000 Livestock Units with a growth rate of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Masanja weeder.                                                                                                                             2.5%. The capital reserve of the rural
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Following the introduction of the weeder                                                                                                    population is in general stored as cattle.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  farmers had to change from broadcast sowing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  to line planting and a longer yoke had to be                                                                                                Problem identification by Farming
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  introduced into the system. To make weeding                                                                                                 System Research–Ukuriguru
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  economically profitable it was integrated into
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              An informal survey was carried out in 1989 by
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  an intensification package. Farmers doubled
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Farming System Research (FSR) based in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  their maize yield in the first year of trials.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Ukuriguru, Mwanza District, to identify key
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Reactions from farmers convinced the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              issues and trends in agriculture in Maswa and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Agricultural Department to obtain many more
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Meatu Districts (FSR, 1991). The survey
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  weeders to supply to farmers. Weeders will also
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              highlighted weeding as one of the major
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  be promoted for use with sorghum, millet and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              constraints to agricultural production; other
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  cotton crops.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              constraints included scarcities of water,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              firewood and transport. FSR carried out a
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Introduction
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              follow-up diagnostic survey in Maswa and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Maswa is one of the six districts of Shinyanga                                                                                              Meatu Districts in 1990.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Region, Tanzania. It covers an area of about
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3398 km2 of which 2375 km2 is arable land,                                                                                                  Crop budget and farm management studies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  177 km2 is forest, and the rest is mountainous                                                                                              Crop budget and farm management studies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  and covered with stunted shrubs and bush.                                                                                                   were undertaken to learn how households in the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              target area managed the problem of labour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    * Subsequent address: Ruben Mungoop                                                       shortages during the growing season. Maize
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Larenstein International Agricultural College                                               and rice were chosen as test crops in the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 PO Box 7, 7400 AA, Deventer, The Netherlands                                                 appropriate zones. As well as quantifying input

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Animal power for weed control                                                                  Note: This version of the paper has been specially prepared for the ATNESA website.        177
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It may not be identical to the paper appearing in the resource book
Ruben R Mungroop, Omari H Bori and Masanja Kalabo


requirements, emphasis was placed on net                                  Food crops are mainly the responsibility of the




                                                                                                                                                   This paper is published in: Starkey P and Simalenga T (eds), 2000. Animal power for weed control. A resource book of the Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa (ATNESA). Technical Centre for
returns and resource productivity. During the                             women and most of the cash crop area in the
first year (1990) crop budgets showed higher                              district is weeded by women using hand hoes.
net returns for the rice production system than                           Men are, in general, responsible for plowing
for maize.                                                                (especially of cash-crops).




                                                                                                                                                                  Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, The Netherlands. ISBN 92-9081-136-6. For details of ATNESA and its resource publications see http://www.atnesa.org
It was felt that ox-drawn weeders offered a                               Studies on the role of women in agriculture are
means of solving the problem of labour                                    important because gender must be considered
shortage for weeding. Management of oxen in                               when introducing mechanisation. The weeding
the area was therefore studied, with a view to                            problem was accentuated after the
assessing the potential for weeder introduction.                          mechanisation of plowing, thus creating a
                                                                          bigger workload for women. If men can take up
Mechanisation in Sukumaland                                               the task of weeding with oxen this will
Ox plows were introduced in Maswa District in                             considerably reduce the burden on women.
the 1960s, to combat drudgery and to boost
crop production. Farmers could easily afford to                           The plow team
buy plows. Ubungo Farm Implements (UFI), a                                The power sources available to farmers
State owned enterprise, was producing and/or                              determine the area of land that can be plowed,
assembling ox plows for the whole of Tanzania.                            planted and weeded. In Maswa, mechanised
The price was low and it was almost impossible                            plowing with oxen is already well adopted.
for other enterprises to compete with them. The
price has subsequently risen steadily.                                    The survey revealed that a normal plow team
                                                                          consists of two people and two oxen. One
No further action was taken in Shinyanga                                  person walks in front beside the oxen and
Region to mechanise other cultivation activities.                         guides them with a stick, while the other person
This partial mechanisation enabled farmers to                             walks behind and controls the plow.
expand their fields considerably over time.
During the 1980s, more than 10 000 plows                                  The plowing season runs from mid-November
were sold in Maswa District, doubling the                                 until February, so oxen are worked for three to
number in the area.                                                       four months. It is estimated that one ox team
                                                                          can plow between 0.2 and 0.25 ha per day.
Weeding was not mechanised, and was often
                                                                          Furrows are about 22 cm wide, and between 20
left to the women and children. Manual
                                                                          and 25 cm deep. There are normally two
weeding was the most time-consuming activity
                                                                          plowings in rainfed agriculture: the first is to
for the Sukuma farm family. Because of the
                                                                          plow the weeds under and the second is meant
large areas plowed, many fields have been
                                                                          to prepare the seedbed. Broadcast seeding is
planted but not weeded. Weeds dramatically
                                                                          generally practised in Sukumaland and takes
reduced yields, especially of cotton (see
                                                                          place before the second plowing.
Table 1).
                                                                          After the FSR–Ukuriguru’s diagnostic survey
Sukuma women in agriculture                                               (FSR, 1991), solving the weed problem was
There is a diverse and complex relationship                               given top priority by the Agriculture and
among household members in the Sukuma tribe                               Livestock Department of Maswa District. A
(FSR, 1991). In Maswa District many tasks are                             weed control programme was initiated in 1992.
divided according to gender: women have more                              This was expected to change the traditional
duties in agricultural production than men.                               hand weeding system, create a more even
                                                                          distribution of responsibilities between the
 Table 1: Average and potential yields of                                 sexes and achieve a better use of resources.
 major crops in Maswa District
                                                                          Introduction of ox weeders
                  Average yields      Potential yields
                      (kg/ha)              (kg/ha)                        At the start of the weed control programme,
 Cotton                 300                 1600                          Maswa agricultural staff visited several
                                                                          oxenisation programmes in Tanzania involved
 Rice                  1000              3500–4000
                                                                          in mechanised weeding, after which the
 Maize                  800              2400–6000                        following implements were purchased:
 Sorghum                700                 2300
                                                                          °      15 Cossul type weeders
 Millet                 700              1400–1700
                                                                          °      10 Mkombozi weeders
                             Note: This version of the paper has been specially prepared for the ATNESA website.
178                                                                                                                Animal Power for Weed Control
                                      It may not be identical to the paper appearing in the resource book
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Introduction of ox-drawn weeders in Maswa District, Shinyanga Region, Tanzania


                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °    2 Houe Sine type frames with weeding                                    line is weeded. It was proposed that the
This paper is published in: Starkey P and Simalenga T (eds), 2000. Animal power for weed control. A resource book of the Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa (ATNESA). Technical Centre for


                                                                                                                                                                                                                       equipment – rigid support                                               weeding should be carried out by one pair of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       (Rumptstad production)                                                  oxen and this was accepted by the farmers.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °    5 Houe Sine type frames with weeding                                    Convincing the farmers that this type of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       equipment – spring support                                              weeding was possible without the oxen eating
               Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, The Netherlands. ISBN 92-9081-136-6. For details of ATNESA and its resource publications see http://www.atnesa.org




                                                                                                                                                                                                                       (Camartec production)                                                   the major part of the crop was very difficult.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °    5 Agro-Alpha weeders.                                                   A young blacksmith produced five yokes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The introduction and testing of the Cossul,                                  according to instructions given by the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mkombozi and Houe Sine (Rumptstad) weeders                                   Agriculture Department. The yokes were than
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  was carried out with selected farmers in the                                 taken to the target villages and distributed as
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  district in conjunction with the Sasakawa                                    examples for further production.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Global 2000 project. By combining optimal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  agronomic practices with a variety of weeders,                               Proposed intensification package
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  it was hoped to achieve the most cost-effective
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Agricultural practices have changed little in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  way of paying for any weeder that might be
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Sukumaland since 1960, despite a growing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  selected for introduction.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               demand for food crops and the introduction of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Houe Sine (Camartec) and the Agro-Alpha                                  cotton as a cash crop.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  arrived late. These were introduced to the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               An intensification package was proposed to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  farmers only during a workshop at the end of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               increase the productivity of the farming system
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the agricultural season. The weeding workshop
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               with the objective of securing food production
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  was designed to allow all the farmers to share
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               and improving the welfare of the farming
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  their individual experiences. The aim was to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               family through use of certified seed and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  evaluate the results and select one weeder
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               fertilisers combined with the ox-drawn weeder.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  which the District Agricultural Department
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Maize was chosen as the test crop for the first
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  could introduce on a larger scale.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               season, because of its popularity with farmers.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The weeder introduction and all actions taken
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  during the season were carried out according to                              The intensification package offered to the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the ‘farmer first’ principles described by                                   farmers consisted of:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chambers, Pacey and Thrupp (1991) combined                                   °   fertiliser 115 kg N and 57.5 kg P2O5/ha
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  with the Participatory Rural Appraisal                                           (30 kg urea and 125 kg triple
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  guidelines (Anon, 1992).                                                         superphosphate per ha at sowing and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   175 kg urea per ha topdressed at the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yokes                                                                            knee-high stage)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The only type of yoke found in the area was the                              °   certified seed: 25 kg of Tanseed or Cargill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  withers yoke. This is considered appropriate for                                 seed per ha, planted in rows 80 cm apart at
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the two types of Tanzanian short-horn zebu                                       an intra-row spacing of 50 cm (two plants
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  (Bos indicus) oxen used in Maswa. However,                                       per hole) to achieve a population of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  withers yokes are also used for donkeys. Breast                                  50 000 plants/ha
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  band harnesses better suited to donkeys were                                 °   pesticide: Marshall ST pesticide (active
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  not seen in Sukumaland. No nose-rings were                                       ingredient carbosulfan) applied as a seed
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  seen on oxen in Sukumaland: the cattle,                                          dressing at 450 g per ha
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  particularly the oxen, found in Maswa District                               °   ox-drawn weeders were provided to the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  are extremely docile compared to those found                                     farmers for testing.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  in South and West Africa. Nevertheless                                       The price of the proposed package was
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  guidance of the animals still poses a problem,                               TSh 27 500 (then about US$ 80) per ha
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  because the farmers have no direct method of                                 exclusive of the weeder. Following the farmers’
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  correcting their direction.                                                  suggestion it was agreed that half the amount
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  For weeding purposes a larger yoke had to be                                 was to be paid before the harvest, and the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  introduced into the farming system. The yoke                                 remainder after. The Agricultural Department
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  used for plowing is 80 cm long and the choice                                financed the action through the Revolving Fund
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  was made to have an inter-row spacing of                                     and the District Rural Development
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  80 cm resulting in a weeding yoke of 160 cm                                  Programme.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  (centre to centre). This distance allows the oxen                            The weeders were introduced and distributed.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  to walk in the two outer lines while the inner                               Farmers were trained and guided during the

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Animal power for weed control   Note: This version of the paper has been specially prepared for the ATNESA website.        179
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           It may not be identical to the paper appearing in the resource book
Ruben R Mungroop, Omari H Bori and Masanja Kalabo


weeding season, but the weeders remained the                              The weeders were compared and discussed by




                                                                                                                                                   This paper is published in: Starkey P and Simalenga T (eds), 2000. Animal power for weed control. A resource book of the Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa (ATNESA). Technical Centre for
property of the Agricultural Department. The                              the whole group. The discussion was led by a
farmers selected all had plows and oxen.                                  farmer and other farmers were asked to relate
Mechanisation of weeding cannot be practised                              their experiences.
by itself and the agricultural staff of Maswa




                                                                                                                                                                  Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, The Netherlands. ISBN 92-9081-136-6. For details of ATNESA and its resource publications see http://www.atnesa.org
District took steps through active collaboration                          Farmers’ comments on the weeders
with Sasakawa Global 2000 to integrate it in a                            Cossul weeder
more intense crop production programme. The                               °  a problem was breakage of the rear heel
aim was to intensify crop production, producing                              part and the moving part in the centre
more on a smaller area, thereby offering the                                 where the lever is situated
possibility of introducing a crop-rotation                                °  it weeds very well when the soil is
scheme with a fallow period for part of the                                  moderately moist. However, when the soil
arable land. It was thought that this farm                                   is too wet the front sweeps clog with mud
practice might reduce some pressure on the                                   and other waste matter
environment. Further information on                                       °  it needs greasing occasionally to work
appropriate crop rotations was to be obtained                                smoothly; storing grease specifically for
from the various agricultural research                                       this purpose might be a problem
institutions.                                                             °  it is easily adjusted during weeding to suit
                                                                             the row width.
A farmer workshop                                                         Mkombozi weeder
Most of the farmers involved in the                                       ° it seems too heavy to be pulled by two
introduction of the weeder came from the                                    oxen; the weight should be reduced
neighbourhood of Ipililo village. Therefore,                              ° it does not penetrate well into soil which is
Ipililo was chosen to host a three-day                                      too wet or when weeds are abundant.
workshop, in 1993, with the theme: ‘Farmers’                              Houe Sine (Rumptstad)
participation in selecting an animal-drawn                                °    it does not earth-up the crops
weeder’.                                                                  °    the area which the duckfeet cover is very
Most of the 43 participants were farmers who                                   small and sometimes parts are left
had participated in the weeder testing                                         unweeded
programme. Extension staff, researchers from                              °    it needs experienced operators because it is
FSR–Ukuriguru, farmers from Kwimba District,                                   not stable in the soil.
and livestock and agricultural staff from Maswa                           On the second day of the workshop the
and Meatu Districts also participated in the                              farmers’ wives and children took part in testing
workshop.                                                                 the weeders. At the end of the day the overall
The objectives set for this workshop were to:                             first choice was the Houe Sine (Rumptstad type
                                                                          combined with wider duckfeet found on the
°    determine, together with the end users (the
                                                                          Camartec model).
     farmers), the most appropriate
     animal-drawn weeder for the region                                   Participants were asked to propose a name for
°    exchange experience and views on the                                 the weeder. By majority vote the name Masanja
     previous mechanisation programme                                     weeder was adopted (in Sukuma language
°    decide on actions for the coming                                     Masanja means combination).
     agricultural season.
Yields obtained from traditional fields and from
using the proposed package were announced
and discussed with the farmers (see Table 2). In                           Table 2: Maize intensification in Ipililo
both cases the fields were plowed to a depth of                            village: average yields on ‘proposal’ and
25 cm. The traditional fields had broadcast                                traditional fields in 1992–93 season
seeding and hand-hoe weeding. Crop density
was approximately 30 000 plants per ha. Time                                                           Average
taken to weed the fields was 20 hours/ha using                                                         yield (kg) Bags/ha
the new technology and about 200 hours/ha in                               Proposed plan + ox weeder     3417        5.7
the traditional fields. This is in line with                               Traditional cultivation and
experience from other African countries                                    hand weeding                  1574        2.4
(Mungroop, 1991).
                             Note: This version of the paper has been specially prepared for the ATNESA website.
180                                                                                                                Animal Power for Weed Control
                                      It may not be identical to the paper appearing in the resource book
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Introduction of ox-drawn weeders in Maswa District, Shinyanga Region, Tanzania


                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Farmer workshop resolutions                                                  Conclusion
This paper is published in: Starkey P and Simalenga T (eds), 2000. Animal power for weed control. A resource book of the Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa (ATNESA). Technical Centre for



                                                                                                                                                                                                                  At the end of the farmers’ workshop the                                      Farmers were sceptical about the transition
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  following five resolutions were adopted by the                               from manual weeding to weeding with the help
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  participants:                                                                of draft animals. They were completely
               Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, The Netherlands. ISBN 92-9081-136-6. For details of ATNESA and its resource publications see http://www.atnesa.org




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               involved in all steps of the introduction through
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °   The District Council, in cooperation with                                the ‘farmer first’ methodology and participatory
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      FSR–Ukuriguru and the Maswa District                                     rural appraisal techniques. Prejudice that the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rural Development Programme, should                                      animals used for weeding would eat a lot of the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ensure that the selected Masanja weeder                                  crop has been overcome. Guidance of the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      will be manufactured in large quantities and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      made available in the District                                             Table 3: Some relative economic data from
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °   the use of ox weeders should be                                            a maize trial carried out in Maswa
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      accompanied by other farm techniques,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Cost of      Cost of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      such as better seeds, use of fertilisers and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        traditional   proposed
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      insecticides, planting in line, and timely
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          method      package
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      execution of cultivation practices
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Operation                                 (Tsh)        (Tsh)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °   farmers must be prepared financially in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      order to afford to buy the weeder and other                                Plowing                                 10 000        10 000
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      inputs                                                                     Planting                                  4 000        4 000
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °   one acre (0.4 ha) of land must be the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 1st weeding                               7 500        4 920
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      minimum area to be cultivated using the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      new techniques by farmers participating in                                 2nd weeding                               7 500        4 920
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      the programme in the coming season                                         1st fertiliser application                 -           1 200
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  °   the Maswa Agricultural Department should                                   2nd fertiliser application                 -           1 200
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      prepare a manual about the new weeder to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      facilitate its operation and service.                                      Insecticide application                    -           1 500
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Harvest                                   2 700        3 300
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Maswa Agricultural Department agreed to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  help implement the resolutions and arranged                                    Shelling                                  1 200        2 100
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  with a local workshop for an initial production                                Total labour costs                       32 900       33 140
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  run of 200 Masanja weeders. Discussions have
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  been held on possible credit packages.                                         Inputs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Seed                                      2 000       12 000
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Fertiliser                                 -          23 250
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profitability of weeder adoption
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Insecticide                                -          12 750
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It appears that the use of weeders by Sukuma                                   Total input costs                         2 000       48 000
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  farmers will be profitable, due to increased
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  production (higher yield), fewer labour                                        Output
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  constraints during weeding and improved
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Yield (kg/ha)                             1 574        3 417
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  timeliness. Considerable yield improvements in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  maize have been seen. It was also observed that                                Bags                                           16         34
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  farmers who assessed the package of inputs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  worked more intensively on their field than                                    Sale value in July
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  previously. They had a better standing crop and                                (Tsh 3000/bag)                          48 000       102 000
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  were proud of this achievement. The oxen                                       Sale value in September
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  which were usually left idle after the plowing                                 (Tsh 6000/bag))                         96 000       204 000
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  season were used more intensively.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Total expenditure                       34 900        81 140
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The introduced technology does not appear to                                   Net margin (July)                        13 100       20 860
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  have displaced labour but has increased the                                    Net margin
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  productivity per person working on the farm.                                                                            61 100      122 800
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (September)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Drudgery has been much reduced, and women
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  are spared long hours weeding the fields                                      Notes: Based on data from 1992–93 trials.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  manually. Some economic data are presented in                                 Crop residues were not included as income.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Table 3.                                                                      US$1=Tsh 400 (approx) in 1993


                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Animal power for weed control   Note: This version of the paper has been specially prepared for the ATNESA website.                       181
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           It may not be identical to the paper appearing in the resource book
Ruben R Mungroop, Omari H Bori and Masanja Kalabo


animals during weeding is still a problem                                 demonstrated that the use of weeders in




                                                                                                                                                   This paper is published in: Starkey P and Simalenga T (eds), 2000. Animal power for weed control. A resource book of the Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa (ATNESA). Technical Centre for
because farmers have no direct method of                                  Sukuma farming is feasible and could lead to a
correcting their direction. It was a great                                revolution in cultivation practices.
advantage that the Sukuma farmers have
already worked with animals for decades.                                  References




                                                                                                                                                                  Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, The Netherlands. ISBN 92-9081-136-6. For details of ATNESA and its resource publications see http://www.atnesa.org
                                                                          Anon, 1992. Participatory rural appraisal handbook,
Yield and productivity increased on all farms                                 1991. Center for International Development and
included in the programme. All the farmers                                    Environment, World Resources Institute, Washington
involved in the programme volunteered to                                      DC, USA.
continue the trials and were ready to assist in                           Chambers R, Pacey A and Thrupp L A (eds), 1991.
                                                                              Farmer first: farmer innovation and agricultural
helping other farmers with the new technology.                                research. Intermediate Technology Publications,
The price of the preferred weeder was                                         London, UK.
perceived to be high. Credit facilities were                              FSR, 1991, Phase 1 Evaluation Mission Report. Farming
under discussion with the farmers.                                            System Research (FSR), Ukuriguru Research Station,
                                                                              Mwanza District, Tanzania.
It is expected to take several years before it will                       Mungroop R R, 1991. The impact of draft animal power
                                                                              on farming systems traditionally cultivating with
be possible to quantify adoption and economic                                 hand labour in Southern Mali. MSc Thesis. Centre
benefits of weeding with oxen. However, the                                   for Tropical Veterinary Medicine (CTVM),
trials and farmer workshop have already                                       University of Edinburgh, Scotland.




                             Note: This version of the paper has been specially prepared for the ATNESA website.
182                                                                                                                Animal Power for Weed Control
                                      It may not be identical to the paper appearing in the resource book

				
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Description: Introduction of ox-drawn weeders in Maswa District, Shinyanga