Production extension within animal health services
There are few examples of animal health services success-fully delivering production information to mixed crop-livestock farmers, other than information linked
Specifically to material inputs such as drugs, vaccines or semen.
Disease prevention through vaccination campaigns, reduction of mortality and morbidity losses, and meat hygiene have remained priorities. This is understandable since human health is an important consideration, diseases cause visible losses and solutions are available .Further, the working patterns of animal health staff tend not be conducive to regular mass extension: animal health services are usually focused on district clinics to which farmers can bring animals, or on call-outs to individual animals. Vets and paravets are unlikely to have training in communication skills.
Their professional reward systems usually revolve around concrete targets of animals treated/vaccinated or drugs supplied and are not conducive to the provision of 'pure' information.
Animal health services, then, have not yet fulfilled their potential as vehicles for mass extension to mixed crop-livestock farmers. A case can be made for information dissemination to widely scattered producers through animal health and fertility camps organized by animal health services, as in India. A case can also be made for Complementing animal health services with a parallel livestock extension service, possibly operating from the animal health clinics and hospitals, but staffed separately. Para veterinary projects, many run by NGOs, have a good record with pastoralists around the world , including to some extent with production