Forage, Fodder, and Animal Nutrition
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Ali Nefzaoui, Hichem Ben Salem. (31/10/2002). Forage, Fodder, and Animal Nutrition, in "Cacti: Biology and Uses". United Kingdom: Oxford University Press (OUP).
The West Asia/North Africa (WANA) region has winters with low and erratic rainfall; hot, dry summers; and characterized by high population growth, limited areas of arable land, harsh deserts, and limited water resources for irrigation development. The search for plant species with the ability to grow and produce in arid areas has been a permanent concern in most WANA countries. Such plants must successfully withstand water shortage, high temperature, and poor soil fertility. Cacti, particularly platyopuntias (Opuntia ficus-indica), can satisfy the requirements of a drought-resistant fodder. This chapter focuses on raising cactus fruits, particularly platyopuntias, for forage and fodder in the WANA region; discusses the use of cacti as fodder; and examines the integration of platyopuntias with other feed resources in the WANA region.