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Bovine foetal wastage and its economic implication: a six-year (2003 – 2008) retrospective study in an abattoir in northwestern, Nigeria

Emmanuel Ochefije Ngbede, Sunday Akau Hena, oluwashina Oluwaysegun Oguntoye, Ruth Tarhyel, Clement Bulus


Pregnancy wastage has been reported to account for about 20-25% of the fall in livestock production in Sub-Saharan Africa. In the light this fact, a six-year (2003 – 2008) retrospective study based on abattoir records was carried out to assess the magnitude of bovine foetal wastage and its economic implication in an abattoir in Kaduna metropolis. A total of 4867 foetuses were encountered during the six year period with an average of 811 foetuses wasted annually. Foetal wastage was observed to occur throughout the year with an increased occurrence (2890) in the first trimester i.e 59.38%. About 3148 (64.68%) of the wastage was encountered in the dry season (November – April) which coincides with the festive periods viz New year, Easter, Sallah and Christmas as well as the advent of the rainy season. Economic analysis of the magnitude of foetal wastage also indicated that about ₦28,390,833.3 - ₦40,558,333.3 ($236,590.278 - $337,986.11) is annually lost to foetal wastage. Full implementation of the legislations against the slaughtering of pregnant animals is advocated in addition to putting in place and strengthening of veterinary structures and services in the abattoirs across the country. Education of the butchers and farmers against slaughtering of pregnant animals and its economic implication is also advocated.


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