Open Access Policy Article

Appraisal of Efficiency of Fadama Maize Farmers in Osun State, Nigeria

F. O. Osundare, Rufus Sunday Owoeye

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-9
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/28904

This study appraised the efficiency of fadama maize farmers in Osun State, Nigeria.  Data were collected from 180 respondents selected through multistage sampling technique with the aid of structured questionnaire supplemented with oral interview. The collected data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, budgetary technique and the stochastic frontier production function. Results of the analysis revealed that; 68% of the respondents were male, 93% were married, and 67.9% had formal education with average farm size of 5.95 hectares of land. The result further revealed that 75.5% of the respondents made use of family labour, and 5 was recorded as mean household size. The results of profitability analysis showed that N307,200 was the mean net revenue and Total Variable Cost (N82,229.29) accounted for 95.5% of the Total Cost (N86,067.97). The estimation of the stochastic frontier production function showed that age, cost of seed, depreciation and operating expenses were negatively correlated with farm output, indicating that an increase in these variables brings about decrease in farm output. Contrarily, a positive relationship existed between farm output and family labour; farm size as well as hired labour, implying that an increase in the variables results in increase in farm output. The result further revealed that farm size; family labour and cost of seeds were statistically significant at 1% i.e. these were the variables influencing the level of maize output in the study area. The Technical Efficiency (TE) of the fadama maize farmers varied significantly between 0.48 and 0.97 with a mean technical efficiency of 0.82. The inefficiency model results showed that number of times of livestock disturbance; variety of seeds grown and level of formal education coefficients were negative suggesting an increase in these variables decreased the technical inefficiency and consequently increased the efficiency. The proportion and prominent constraints reported by the farmers were; lack of storage facility (95.6%), high cost of fertilizer (64.8%), inadequate credit facility (54.1%) and bad road (50.9%). The study concluded that fadama maize production was a profitable and lucrative economic activity, having empirically examined and appraised the efficiency of fadama maize farmers in Osun State, Nigeria. It is now recommended that; fadama, farmers should be provided with credit facilities to enable them finance their farming enterprises, modern inputs should be made available to the farmers at affordable rate by the Agro service centers of each Local Government Area of the State and efforts should be made by research institutes to generate new improved technologies on fadama production.

Open Access Original Research Article

Growth and Development Response of Telfairia occidentalis Hook. f. to Aluminium Sulphate Treated Water

P. O. Eremrena, L. A. Akonye

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-5
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/28138

This study was conducted to examine the response of Telfairia occidentalis to aluminium sulphate treated water. The growth parameters (shoot length, root length, fresh weight, dry weight and moisture content) and mineral elements (Ca, Mg, Na, P, K, Zn, Cu, Fe, Mn, and Pb) were determined using the recommended method of analysis. The result of this study showed that the shoot length, root length and moisture content of the crop significantly (P=0.05) decreased with increase in the concentration of aluminium sulphate treatment. The calcium, magnesium, sodium, iron, manganese and lead content of the crop decreased with increase in the concentration of alum treatment. While the phosphorous, potassium, zinc and copper increased with increase in the concentration of aluminium sulphate treatment. Therefore this study suggests that higher concentration of aluminium sulphate in water can pose toxic effect to Telfairia occidentalis.

Open Access Original Research Article

Comparison of Antagonistic Activity of Pseudmonas fluorescens and Trichoderma viride against Selected Species of Fungal Pathogens

P. S. Sreeshma, Vimala Jose

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-7
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/28049

Aims: The antagonistic activities of Pseudomonas fluorescens and Trichoderma viride have been evaluated by a number of studies. This research work was aimed to compare the antagonistic activities of Pseudomonas fluorescens and Trichoderma viride against selected species of plant fungal pathogens viz, Pythium aphanidermatum, Fusarium oxysporum, Alternaria alternata and Aspergillus niger.

Study Design: In vitro assay of antifungal activity.

Methodology: Dual culture method is conducted to compare the antagonistic activities of the bio control agents like Pseudomonas fluorescens and Trichoderma viride against selected species of fungal pathogens viz, Pythuim aphanidermatum, Fusarium oxysporum, Aspergillus niger and Alternaria alternata. Three replicates were maintained for each treatment and mean percent inhibition of radial growth of pathogen in dual culture plate was recorded. Statistical analysis was done to know the significance of comparison.

Results: Out of the four fungal pathogens Fusarium oxysporum showed the highest inhibition of radial mycelial growth in the presence of both Pseudomonas fluorescens (49.41±0.4%) and Trichoderma viride (85.7±0.3%). Aspergillus niger recorded the least value. It was found that Trichoderma viride exhibited comparatively greater antagonistic activity compared to Pseudomonas fluorescens.

Conclusion: In vitro studies suggested that both the bio controls were effective against four fungal pathogens under the study and are promising biological control for Fusarium oxysporum.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effects of NPK and Cow Dung on the Performance of Rice (Oryza sativa) in the Sudan Savanna Agro-ecological Zone of Nigeria

S. A. Lukman, M. Audu, A. U. Dikko, H. G. Ahmed, M. M. Sauwa, M. Haliru, S. S. Noma, S. A. Yusif, A. Salisu, N. G. Hayatu

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-9
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/27277

This study evaluated the effect of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium (NPK 20-10-10) and cow dung on the performance of rice at two locations (Sokoto and Talata Mafara) in the Sudan savanna zone of Nigeria, during the 2012/2013 dry season. The treatments consisted of nine different combinations of cow dung and NPK fertilizer with an absolute control, using rice (FARO 44) as a test crop. The treatments were laid out in a Randomize Complete Block Design (RCBD) and replicated three times. The combined application of cow dung and NPK fertilizer significantly (p < 0.05) increased most of the results obtained with regards to locations compared to the control plots. The growth and yield parameters of rice considered were significantly (p <0.05) affected by the treatments except one thousand grain weight. Application of 8 t ha-1 of cow dung in combination with 400 kg ha-1 NPK 20:10:10 gave the highest grain yield (5.77 t ha-1) at Sokoto, while application of 12 t ha-1 of cow dung in combination with 300 kg ha-1 NPK 20:10:10 gave the highest grain yield (6.50 t ha-1) at Talata Mafara. In conclusion, it is recommended that application of 12 t ha-1 of cow dung in combination with 300 kg ha-1 NPK 20:10:10 resulted in the best soil nutrient enrichment and yield of rice in Sokoto and Talata Mafara. The result showed that judicious application of cow dung with NPK fertilizers could be a useful practice for better performance of Rice in the study areas compared to the control plots which significantly recorded the least. 

Open Access Original Research Article

Responses of Broiler Finisher Birds Fed Diets Containing Sweet Potato (Ipomoea batata) Root Meal

P. C. Jiwuba, E. Dauda, E. Dauda, M. U. Onyekwere, S. O. Okechukwu, V. R. Ubogu

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-7
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/28559

A twenty eight day feeding trial was conducted to evaluate the replacement value of sweet potato root meal (SPRM) as replacement for maize on feed intake, body weight changes, carcass and organ weight characteristics of broiler finisher birds. SPRM was processed and used to replace maize at 0%, 10%, 20% and 30% dietary levels, represented as T1, T2, T3 and T4 respectively. Two hundred and forty (240) four weeks old Anak chicks were randomly divided into four experimental groups with three replicates of twenty birds per replicate were assigned the four diets in a completely randomized design. Data collected showed significant (p<0.05) differences in feed intake, body weight changes and feed conversion ratio. T2 animals produced the best performance, while T4 had the least values. Drumstick, back, neck, shanks, gizzard/proventriculus, heart and kidney of the experimental birds were similar (P>0.05) among the treatments. The dressed weight, dressing percentage, weights of the thigh, wings, breast muscle, and liver of the birds diets differed (p<0.05) significantly with T2 animals showing superiority over the animals on the other diets. This experiment revealed that sweet potato root meal can best replacement maize in diets of finisher broiler at 10% dietary level and should be recommended for broiler finisher production.