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Yoshida H.,Japan National Research Institute of Fisheries And Environment of Inland Sea | Compton J.,Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries | Punnett S.,Ministry of Agriculture Lands and Fisheries | Lovell T.,Ministry of Agriculture Lands and Fisheries | And 6 more authors.
Aquatic Mammals | Year: 2010

A cetacean line-transect survey was conducted in the eastern Caribbean Sea and the adjacent southwestern North Atlantic Ocean from 17 April to 14 May 2004 to obtain information on cetacean distribution and density. The survey area was divided into coastal and offshore blocks; the coastal blocks contained the insular continental shelf. A total of 2,273 nmi (4,210 km) was searched (1,528 nmi [2,830 km] in coastal blocks and 745 nmi [1,380 km] in offshore blocks) with 76 cetacean sightings (64 and 12 for the coastal and offshore blocks, respectively). Twelve species were identified (number of individuals/groups observed in coastal blocks-offshore blocks): 4/4(2/2) Bryde's whale (Balaenoptera edeni), 7/5(2/1) humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae), 5/5(0/0) sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus), 32/3(0/0) short-finned pilot whale (Globicephala macrorhynchus), 132/4(0/0) melon-headed whale (Peponocephala electra), 1/1(0/0) Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus), 42/6(0/0) bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), 30/1(0/0) Fraser's dolphin (Lagenodelphis hosei), 505/9(33/3) pantropical spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata), 35/1(35/1) Atlantic spotted dolphin (S. frontalis), 35/1(0/0) spinner dolphin (S. longirostris), and 90/1(0/0) striped dolphin (S. coeruleoalba). Additionally, 28 groups were sighted for which the species could not be identified: 5/5(2/2) large whales, 11/5(0/0) Mesoplodon spp., 1/1(0/0) ziphiid whale, 5/1(0/0) Stenella spp., and 39/11(10/3) dolphins. Due to the low number of sightings on account of the poor sighting conditions during the survey, abun dance of cetaceans could not be estimated. Source

Bush R.D.,University of Sydney | Young J.R.,University of Sydney | Suon S.,Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries | Ngim M.S.,Royal Academy of Cambodia | Windsor P.A.,University of Sydney
Animal Production Science | Year: 2014

A major challenge for large ruminant improvement projects in developing countries is smallholder farmer engagement that promotes the value of knowledge in informed decision making. Most large ruminant smallholder farmers in Cambodia are considered to be livestock keepers and will become livestock producers only if they recognise the production and financial benefits from improved health and management practices. The benefits of growing and feeding five introduced forage species was investigated as a potential entry point for smallholder farmer engagement in southern Cambodia. The mean chemical composition, digestibility and estimated metabolisable energy (ME; MJ/kg DM) of introduced forages at 30 days after first harvest were comparable to published values. An initial establishment of 52 fodder plots covering 2.6 ha in 2008 expanded to 1306 plots covering 45 ha, including non-project farmers from surrounding areas. The establishment of forage plots in high-intervention project villages provided an improvement in average daily liveweight gain of cattle and saved farmers up to 2 h labour per day. This strategy provided a platform for increased uptake and adoption of livestock health and production interventions. © CSIRO 2014. Source

Bush R.D.,University of Sydney | Page B.,University of Sydney | Macdonald T.,University of Sydney | Young J.R.,University of Sydney | And 6 more authors.
Animal Production Science | Year: 2014

Increased demand for red meat throughout the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) presents smallholder cattle and buffalo farmers with an opportunity to supply better quality animals to expanding regional markets. Cattle were target-fed in Cambodia with introduced forages to achieve gains of 0.19 kg/day over a 104-day period and this practice was compared with traditional cut-and-carry feeding practices where animals lost on average 0.04 kg/day. Target-fed animals were predicted to gain, on average, 25.9 kg more weight than animals fed in a traditional manner (P ≤ 0.057), and to improve their estimated value by more than US$60. These outcomes were similar to outcomes in Lao PDR, where cattle and buffalo in fattening stalls gained 0.32 and 0.22 kg/day, respectively, over a 4-month period, and 0.04 and 0.09 kg/day when free-grazing. Greater weight gains are possible if farmers feed forages at the recommended 15% of bodyweight on a fresh-weight basis per day. Lack of knowledge of animal weights by farmers and traders was addressed by the creation of an accurate weight tape to provide a cheap and easy tool to monitor animal production and health, and to assist in negotiating a fair sale value. However, increased knowledge of appropriate forage plot size and feeding requirements of animals to be target-fed is required for farmers to change from being livestock keepers to livestock producers. To increase supply for the growing demand for red meat, an ongoing, multi-disciplinary extension program should be a priority for livestock improvement programs in the GMS. © CSIRO 2014. Source

Young J.R.,University of Sydney | O'Reilly R.A.,University of Sydney | Ashley K.,University of Sydney | Suon S.,Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries | And 3 more authors.
Transboundary and Emerging Diseases | Year: 2014

To better understand how smallholder farmers whom own the majority of Cambodian cattle can contribute to efforts to address food security needs in the Mekong region, a five-year research project investigating methods to improve cattle health and husbandry practices was conducted. Cattle production in Cambodia is constrained by transboundary animal diseases (TADs) including foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) and haemorrhagic septicaemia (HS) plus poor nutrition, reproduction and marketing knowledge. The project worked in six villages in Kandal, Takeo and Kampong Cham province during 2007-12. Farmers from three 'high intervention' (HI) villages incrementally received a participatory extension programme that included FMD and HS vaccination, forage development and husbandry training. Evaluation of project impacts on livelihoods was facilitated by comparison with three 'low intervention' (LI) villages where farmers received vaccinations only. Results of knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) and socio-economic surveys conducted in 2012 of 120 participating farmers identified that farmer knowledge in the HI project sites exceeded LI sites on the topics of biosecurity, internal parasites, nutrition and reproduction. HI farmers adopted biosecurity practices including a willingness to vaccinate for FMD and HS at their own cost, separate sick from healthy cattle, grow and feed forages and displayed awareness of the benefits of building fattening pens. HI farmers that grew forages observed time savings exceeding two hours per day each for men, women and children, enabling expansion of farm enterprises, secondary employment and children's schooling. Logistic regression analysis revealed that farmers in the HI group significantly increased annual household income (P < 0.001), with 53% reporting an increase of 100% or more. We conclude that improving smallholder KAP of cattle health and production can lead to improved livelihoods. This strategy should be of interest to policymakers, donors, researchers and extension workers interested in addressing TAD control, food insecurity and rural poverty in Southeast Asia. © 2014 Blackwell Verlag GmbH. Source

Takagi A.P.,University of Tokyo | Ishikawa S.,Tokai University | Nao T.,Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries | Song S.L.,Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries | And 6 more authors.
Journal of Applied Ichthyology | Year: 2011

This study investigated the genetic variation in the Mastacembelidae fish Macrognathus siamensis by sequencing 1047bp of the mitochondrial ND2 gene of 48 fish samples collected in the Mekong River. They were divided into 15 mtDNA haplotypes. The haplotype network and Bayesian tree revealed striking genetic differences between the Laos and Cambodian samples. The high pairwise F statistic values (0.93-0.97) also confirmed this genetic differentiation. Analysis of the molecular clock indicated that these two samples separated approximately four million years ago. Most likely, the genetic variation was influenced by immigration and isolation events as well as by environmental factors. Furthermore, the present study results could be valuable in identifying the conservation and resource management units of this species. © 2011 Blackwell Verlag, Berlin. Source

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