Volume 19 Nos. 1-3 - Environmental requirement and management of some important forage species in the Philippines
Due to illegal logging which is normally followed by shifting cultivation, several parts of what was once a Philippine natural forest, are now open degraded grasslands. According to various studies in 1976, the grassland area was estimated at about 3.4 M ha. This further expanded to about 6.5 M ha (or 22% of the country's total land area) in 1995. The magnitude of transformation is more than 163T ha per year from 1976 to 1995.
Out of these grassland areas, there are areas which have been declared as Pasture Lease Agreement. These areas, when properly managed and utilized, have the potential to increase the country's livestock production, quantity - and quality-wise. Thus, the issues on food insufficiency and malnutrition due to animal protein gap have to be addressed. Consequently, this will help boost the country's economy.
This issue presents the environmental requirements and management of important forage species that are adaptable under Philippine condition. It provides knowledge and information, for the ranchers and livestock raisers, on the optimum habitat for better forage production and management, in turn, contributing to improved meat production (in quantity and quality) from the Philippine grasslands.