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Open AccessArticle

The Future of Yak Farming from the Perspective of Yak Herders and Livestock Professionals

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Farm Technology Group, Wageningen University & Research, P.O. Box 16, 6700AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
2
Animal Production Systems Group, Wageningen University & Research, P.O. Box 338, 6700AH Wageningen, The Netherlands
3
Department of Animal Science, College of Natural Resources, Royal University of Bhutan, Lobesa, Punakha 1264, Bhutan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(10), 4217; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12104217
Received: 7 April 2020 / Revised: 23 April 2020 / Accepted: 24 April 2020 / Published: 21 May 2020
The declining number of yak farming families is perceived as a socio-political and economic concern in Bhutan. However, there is limited understanding of what influences herders’ plans and decisions on yak farming. We studied factors determining future perspectives of yak farming by interviewing yak herders and livestock professionals. We analysed relationships between herders’ characteristics and level of concerns, and future plans related to yak farming. Furthermore, relationships between level of concern and future plans were analysed. Most of the herder characteristics did not influence their future plans with yak farming. Age and level of perceived concern of the herders was associated with their wish for their children to continue yak farming in the future. Nevertheless, they expect that the number of yak farming families will decline in the next ten years. Additionally, most of the livestock professionals believe that the number of yak farming families will decline in the future. No differences were observed between the aggregated score of concern of herders and livestock professionals. The most important factors threatening the future of yak farming in Bhutan according to herders and livestock professionals are forage shortage, predation and no successor to take up yak farming. View Full-Text
Keywords: yak farming; future; opinions; perceived concern; sustainability yak farming; future; opinions; perceived concern; sustainability
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MDPI and ACS Style

Dorji, N.; Derks, M.; Groot Koerkamp, P.W.; Bokkers, E.A. The Future of Yak Farming from the Perspective of Yak Herders and Livestock Professionals. Sustainability 2020, 12, 4217.

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