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Relationship between normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and forage biomass yield in the Vakinankaratra region, Madagascar

Rahetlah B.V., Salgado P., Andrianarisoa B., Tillard E., Razafindrazaka H., Le Mezo L., Ramalanjaona V.L.. 2014. Livestock Research for Rural Development, 26 (5) : 11 p..

Dairy cow production is an important livestock activity in the highlands of Madagascar and specifically in the Vakinankaratra region. Despite the increase of global milk production over the last decades, cow productivity remains low due to both quantity and quality feed constraints. Elephant grass and Italian ryegrass are the most cultivated forage grass, during the wet and warm season and the dry and cool season, respectively. An experiment under field conditions was carried out to evaluate the ability of the satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) to develop a tool for estimating biomass yields of Elephant grass and Italian ryegrass. Results showed moderate to strong but significant relationship between plant height and biomass yield (R² = 0.64 to 0.92), between NDVI and biomass yield (R² = 0.52 to 0.73) and between NDVI and plant height (R² = 0.61 to 0.74) of Elephant grass and Italian ryegrass, respectively. These results suggest that NDVI has potential to provide a tool for dynamic monitoring and management of pastureland forage production.

Mots-clés : madagascar

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