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Pastoralism in the drylands of Latin America: Argentina, Chile, Mexico and Peru

Author(s) : J.M. Grünwaldt, et al.

Summary :

This article discusses various aspects of pastoralism in the Latin American countries with the largest dryland areas. The topics covered include: social, economic and institutional issues; grasslands and their carrying capacity; production systems and productivity rates; competition for forage resources between domestic livestock and wildlife; and the health status of livestock and wildlife. Most grasslands exhibit some degree of degradation. The percentage of offspring reaching weaning age is low: 47–66% of calves and 40–80% of lambs. Some pastoralists adopt patterns of transhumance. In the main, pastoralists experience a high poverty rate and have poor access to social services. For many pastoralists, wildlife is a source of food and by-products. Argentina, Chile, Mexico and Peru have animal health control agencies, are members of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and have signed the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification. Pastoral systems subsist mainly on income unrelated to pastoral farming.

Animal health – Domestic livestock and wildlife – Drylands – Grasslands – Latin America – Pastoralism – Social and economic aspects.

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