Written Paper

The Guinea pig Cavia porcellus L., as a meat producing animal in Cameroon  [1994]

Ngou Ngoupayou, J.D. Fotso, J.M. Kouonmenioc, J. (Institut de Recherches Zootechniques et Veterinaires, Yaounde (Cameroun))

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Guinea pig Cavia porcellus farming for meat production remains a marginalised activity in Cameroon in spite of the advantages this species offers. With the view to promote its production, a national countrywide survey was carried out in order to evaluate the production systems and constraints. Traditional Guinea pig farming appears to be a secondary household activity undertaken by small farmers basically women. The extensive production system which reveals no management practices, integrates very well in the agricultural systems (small livestock, food crops and natural forages production) of the western highlands and southern forests zones of Cameroon. Guinea pig productivity remains low due to many constraints such as predation, uncontrolled breeding, inbreeding, poor feeding, negative selection and lack of veterinary care. Nevertheless, guinea pig farming plays an important role in the well being of low income village dwellers as food security, cash savings and socio-cultural values within the populations of South Cameroon. The promotion of its production requires an awareness of animal scientists, development authorities, as well as on station research of improved raising conditions.