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Estimation of enteric methane emission factors for Ndama cattle in the Sudanian zone of Senegal

Ndao S., Traoré E.H., Ickowicz A., Moulin C.H.. 2020. Tropical Animal Health and Production : 15 p..

Methane (CH4) emission estimations for cattle in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) reflect limited production levels and diets that are high in cellulose forage. However, data on these livestock systems is lacking for their accurate evaluation. To provide guidance for climate change mitigation strategies in Senegal, it is necessary to obtain reliable estimates of CH4 emissions from Ndama cattle reared in grazing systems, which is the predominant cattle system in the country. The objective of this study was to determine the annual methane emission factor (MEF) for enteric fermentation of Ndama cattle following the IPCC Tier 2 procedure. Our estimated annual MEF at the herd scale was 30.8 kg CH4/TLU (30.7 kg CH4/head/yr for lactating cows and 15.1 kg CH4/head/yr for other cattle). These values are well below the default IPCC emission factor (46 and 31 kg CH4/head/yr for dairy and other cattle, respectively) proposed in the Tier 1 method for Africa. Our study showed that feed digestibility values differ with season (from 46 to 64%). We also showed that cattle lose weight and adapt to lower feed requirements during the long dry season, with a resulting major reduction in methane emissions. The results of this work provide a new framework to re-estimate the contribution of grazing systems to methane emissions in Africa.

Thématique : Elevage - Considérations générales; Physiologie et biochimie animales

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