The Krishna Valley breed of cattle is a dual purpose breed distributed in Bagalkot, Belgaum & Bijapur districts of Karnataka and is reported to be endangered by different survey conducted in its native habitat. The breed lost its importance due to limited use of draught power and choice of farmers for high milk producing breeds. The number of Krishna Valley cattle decreased to less than 500 in the breeding tract. Further ignorance and no attention could have led to the extinction of this important cattle germplasm. At this juncture, National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources came to the rescue of this germplasm and a project to conserve this breed was initiated in X plan under Network project on AnGR through BAIF Development Research Foundation.
The project activities started by procuring 8 Krishna Valley young bull calves conforming to the breed characteristics from the field. These calves were reared to maturity and trained for donating semen. The semen parameters like sperm concentration, live dead sperm count, initial and post thaw motility, etc. were studied before undertaking the semen freezing. 8000 semen doses from this breed were conserved in National gene bank at NBAGR for posterity. The remaining semen doses were provided for use in the breeding tract of this breed through BAIF and state animal husbandry department in 150 villages of the 3 districts of Karnataka.
Various programmes were organized in the tract to create awareness about conservation of the breed. With this joint effort of NBAGR and BAIF, more than 2500 Krishna Valley cattle can be seen in its native tract now.
Impact of the Project
- From late 2007 till September 2011 a total of 4485 AIs were performed with an overall conception rate of 53% in the field.
- So far 939 progenies of Krishna Valley has been born.
- People have been taught about the importance of this germplasm
- AI programme for this breed has been started in the native tract by the State government functionaries.
- A nucleus herd of Krishna Valley cattle has been established in the breeding tract for supply of breeding bulls in the field.