71) nT-t11.0 -I I s 0
TO~;. 7~r.i.:~; T- :r I y Cu r D., p ul- I 0 1 s
A Threat To Caribbean Agriculture
to NEWV ZEALAND,
CANADA and all
WEST INDIES SYNTHETICS LTD.
Twickenham Park, Spanish Town, Jamaica.
YOUNG NATIONS' GREATEST NEED
CONTROL OF RATS IN SUGAR CANE
U LTRA LOW-VO LUM E SPRAY ING
WEST INDIAN SEA ISLAND COTTON
11 LETTER FROM A FARMER
FATTENING STEERS WITH LOW-CONCENTRATE RATIONS
FILLING THE HUNGRY GAP
L I FE CYCLE OF STRONG LO IDES
23 PAI NTING WATE R STO RAG E TAN KS
The1( editor will be glad to hea~r froml falrmelrs, resealrchr workers, extension officers
andlr others whoe wouldl like to offer alrticles or phlotographls for pulblicationz in
CAR KIBBEA.~N FA.4RM ING.
P-referenrce is giv~en to particles of a practical Inature whichl will hzelp to put thle
resullts of` researchl andr e~xperimnclt into thle farnler's hanlds. Where possible, good
dralwingsl or dliagramns shlourldi alompantlly articles. Good quality photographs of not less
thlan 5" xu 7" alre weclcome~c threy should relate to farming ini the region.
Pay ment will be madeti (onr pulblication) for all material accepted.
Rates for 4 Issues
Jamaica $1.67 Eastern Caribbean E.C. $4.00, U.S.A. and other Countries $2.00.
To simply technical terminology,
commercial names may be used. This
is not intended as an endorsement of
products named, nor as criticism of
similar products not named.
The opinions expressed in articles do not necessarily represent
the views of the publiishers
Published in association with the Faculty of Agriculture, University of the West Indies. Edited
by CAROL RECKORD. Caribbean Farming welcomes suggestions, articles. Address all
correspondence to CARIBBEAN FARMING, P.O. Box 174, Mona, Kingston 7, Jamaica, W.I.
July-September 1970 Vol. 2 No. 3
ONE POINT FOUR PERCENT
The seventy-twro cows and calves in the breeding herd in
this photograph- represent only 1.4% of Alcan's total beef
herd of 5,000 head. Progress in beef production by Alcan
can be measured by a liveweight production increase from
175,000 Ibs. in 1946 to 1,400,000 Ibs. in 1968, the result
of carefulI cattle breeding and selection and pastu re
management i m prove ment prog ra mmes.
Beef is only one way in which Alcan contributes to the
country's agricultural sector. The Company also produces
citrus, milk and forest products and its 4,500 tenant
farmers make a substantial contribution to Jamaica's food
crop production from the 20,000 acres of Alcan land
which they are farming.
Alcan, Alumina and Agriculture are three A's which mean
a lot to Jamaica's economy.
... lrd5l ALCAN JAMAICA LIMITED
Too many people in developing countries do not
realize that agriculture is the SCIENCE and practice
of farming not just the tilling of the soil. Until
national leaders in developing countries realize the
economic benefits, the contribution to the gross national
product, the multiplier effect that makes a dollar's
vorth of local product provide $20 or more in
income to the people, agriculture will not develop. Until
national leaders are familiar with the rather compli-
:ated technical factors that form the basis of
scientificc agriculture, research will not develop. And
:ntil these same national leaders realize that
search, no matter how excellent, is not productive
less the results are applied on a wide scale through
application of modern extension methods, agricul-
Ire will fail to contribute its expected share to
lie economy of a developing nation.
examine e a young nation's agricultural needs.
Jew Imputs. These new imputs are made up of new
.rops, new varieties of old crops and new cultural
practices needed to grow them. Research is needed
a grow these successfully under local conditions.
:xtra fast growth, for example, might result in
Ing, weak stems that fall over and "lodge"in the
;st strong breeze. Result lost cro Research
required on planting dates to take advantage of
ains or dry seasons, on fertilizers and closer spacings
a maximize advantages from irrigation or more
infall, on effects of spacings on diseases and
:sects and economical controls. Such studies,
atd many more, are necessary to capitalize on the
a ribbean's many advantages of climate, soil,
;opography, aspect. Large initial research
S;penditures are feasible to get quick information and
ge~t into production.
Quick cash returns are an obvious advantage. New
research inputs should be concentrated on cash crops
that will pay off in a short-term period. There
is no questioning the contribution of research on
established mainstays of the economy.
But developing nations need diversification. This cals
for big new research money for quick profits from
~Research should be in the public sector. There is no
place for private agricultural research in a developing
country unless results are as immediately available
for general use as results from government research.
The key here is open files and an active extension staff
to dig out the results and make immediate
recommendations for all to use.
Trained people. Most developing countries find the
money to send employees to recognized agricultural
schools. U.W.I. and E.C.F.I., for example,
are continually training students on scholarships from
goernment or agribusiness or philanthropists'
fondations. This is excellent as long as the correct
training is available. Many schools lack space or
facilities to accept all applicants. Some do not offer
adequate extension training that officers need
to motivate, organize and educate their farmer friends.
Most agiculture students without extension
training are an island of knowledge in a sea of need
with little skill at communicating what they know. Far-
mers must change from traditional to production systems
to improve their cost/benefit ratio. They must learn
business management as well as cultural practices. This
requires competent extension personnel skilled in
teaching, motivating and organizing farm people.
Extension must work closely with agribusinesses. Con-
vincing a farmer to grow a new crop is useless unless
the farmer has the complete picture on soils, cultural
practices, pest control, harvesting and market g.
This, in turn, is worthless unless h~e has the agr businesses
readily available to supply his needs such as
correct seed, fertilizer, insecticide, rat controls,
equipment and market to grow and sell the entire crop
at a profit. If a farmer rejects a set of practices it is
either incomplete or incorrect. This calls for good
extension, good agribusinesses, good markets.
Mass media such as radio or newspapers are not enough
in a developing country. Farmers must be shown
individually by extension officer, farm leaders,
neighbours or demonstrations on nearby
farms. This requires a well staffed extension service
trained in methods tailored to meet the needs
of the farmers.
Though diversification is the trend, the shotgun
approach will not produce results. The commodity
approach provides well defined programme targets.
YOlmlg Nartions' Gr~eatest. need- Scie~tif~ic Farm~ing
by Ivan R. Martin, Fulbright Lecturer, University of the West Indies.
Surveys of rat damage in single sugar cane fields were
conducted at Frome and at United Estates in 1964
and losses were estimated at 9.0% and 10.0%
respectively of yield In 1965 estimates of losses
at Trelawny Estates averaged 5.4% of the potential yield
for a number of fields At this time only 3 out of
17 Sugar Manufacturers' Association estates carried
out any control measures against rats and on 16 out
of 17 rat damage was considered to be negligible
by estates' personnel.
Primary damage of cane is by rats taking bites out of
the stems. This allows the introduction of red rot so
that eventually the entire stem rots.
The site of the rat bite also assists a number of
insect pests, principally weevil borer, to gain access
to the cane stem. Rats will eat weevil borers which
are a useful source of protein to them, so that they in
some measure help to provide a food source for
continued from page 3.
If there is a rice deficit, or other deficit, eliminate it,
Establish priorities as to need and eliminate the high
priority need first. A top priority commodity
is the one that can contribute the most and help the
greatest number of people in the shortest time. This
takes careful, unbiased selection.
The interdisciplinary approach permits many concerned
disciplines to "zero-in" on the problem commodity.
With the most concerned discipline heading the
team, the problem is cut down to manageable size
as agronomists, pathologists, entomologists,
engineers and others work on parts of the problem.
But the key remains in the hands of national leaders. Only
when they realize the potential magnitude of the farm
contribution to the economy and the technical
agricultural needs required to maximize the potential
will they support legislation requesting the funds that
will make it possible. They have to establish priorities,
too. They must depend on agriculturists trained in
economics and production for sound information to
aid them in their determinations, to help them formulate
sound legislation, to help them support such legislation
and the action programmes that follow. e
ANTICOAGULANTS FOR RAT CONTROL
A new type of rodenticide, developed in the late 1940's
began to be used on an extensive scale in the early 1950's.
Discovered at the University of Wisconsin, Warfarin
was named for the Wisconsin Alumni Research
Foundation and is a compound containing the
chemical coumarin. It and other coumarin derivatives
prevent blood from clotting and cause leaks in the small
blood vessels so that the poisoned animal bleeds to
death from internal haemorrhages. The chief advantage
of this type of poison is that a single dose of it is not
normally fatal to rats. Death is brought about through
the cumulative effects of small doses taken over seve -al
days. Very low concentrations can be used and rats
do not develop bait shyness.
Warfarin baits became widely-used by sugar-growers at
Puerto Rico, Mexico, Guyana and Taiwan following
the lead from Hawaii. Improved ways of producing
poisoned baits were developed leading eventually
to blocks of attractive foodstuffs such as cornmeal
anticoagulant poison and consolidated by means a
paraffin wax. The wax prevents the breakdown of
the bait by rain and makes the provision of bait-cor
training shelters unnecessary. Frequently the wax is
coloured and minute amounts of insecticides and
fungicides may be added to prevent insects and
mould attacking the baits.
Warfarin-containing baits met with great success ur i1
resistant strains of rats were found in Guyana and i
Europe, which have prompted the investigation of
other poisons. Nevertheless, a variety of anti-
coagulants is now available together with additives
which may further increase the rats' susceptibility .
them. No resistance to anticoagulants has yet been
found in Jamaica although Warfarin has been used
here for several years if only little in sugar cane.
iii Rates of application
Experiments at Frome over the past two years have
been carried out in a block of fields where the percentayc
loss in yield in 1969 averaged 1.2%. The monetary loss,
taking into account the cost of cutting, loading and
milling was $3.20 per acre. If this figure of $3.20
per acre is taken as an average figure for all sugar cane
in Jamaica, then the annual loss in the island from rats
would amount to J$560,000, which is not a negligible
sum. It has been shown that the percentage loss in
CONTROL OF RATS IN SUGAR CANE
by J.H. FRANK
Research Department of the Sugar Manufacturers Association of famaica Limited.
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yield may be much more than 1.2% in some areas, but
alternatively, in the middle of large areas of sugar cane
it may be less. Visible evidence of this 1.2% loss in
yield was just under 4% rat-damaged cane.
it was found possible to reduce this loss by over 95% by
sing baits containing Warfarin. The number of baits
ut out in a poisoning programme should be related
;rstly to the sine and shape of the affected fields
-d secondly to the size of the rat population.
Its are not able to survive on a diet of sugar cane
,ne Most of the rat damage to cane occurs to
Lture cane with a high sucrose content. Young cane
les not offer them much cover and is not highly
activee to them. More mature cane offers more
ver and is more attractive. Yet it is probable that
ey generally do not live in it, but merely visit the cane
search of food, returning afterwards to their burrows
nests outside the cane fields Even those rats
iich do nest in mature cane fields must go outside
m to obtain their food requirements. They
beforee "commute" frequently in and out of cane
ds at night, because they are nocturnal. For this
son baits placed at the edges of cane fields are
ieved to be more effective than baits scattered
oughout the fields. Additionally, bait placement
the edges of cane fields is much easier to
bieve (except aerially) than placement deep
;ide the fields. Also, bait placement around mature
aids is more effective than is bait placement around
lung fields, because of the rats' preference for
pacing of baits twenty yards apart along the edges
F fields was found to be just as effective in
Ipreventing damage as spacing them ten yards apart at
a rat population density which would cause 1.2%
loss of yield. A distribution of this type is easily achieved
by a man walking around a field, carrying a box of baits
and throwing a block of bait just inside the cane field
at twenty yard intervals without breaking his stride.
It is even better if the baits can be placed on the bank
of a ditch or drain at the border of the field because
with mechanical harvesting or loading there is some
slight risk that baits could be taken up with the cane.
To maintain control of rats moving into the field from
Outside, the more frequently baits are placed in this way,
the better, but at the 1.2%0 loss of yield level,
a renewal time of ten weeks was found to be adequate
and to give good economical returns. If baits are
placed every five weeks this doubles the cost of the
baits and increases the efficiency of control by less
than 4%. If baits are placed every 20 weeks then
efficiency of control is reduced by over 40%.
Half-pound blocks of bait containing about 0.25%
Warfarin, commercially available in Jamaica, were
used in this experiment. Where damage is very much
greater than 1.2% loss in yield, then it is probably better
to increase the quantity of bait placed at each site
(i.e. 11b. instead of V/2 lb.) rather than to increase
hte frequency of baiting or to reduce the distance
between baits. Recommendations for controlling
daage less than 1.2% loss in yield (4% damaged cane)
cannot be made because this was the level mn the
Rats eating Warfarin leak blood slowly frorn internal capillaries and
die after several days.
Because, as mentioned before, rats "commute"
between sugar cane fields and surrounding areas, then
blocks of fields may be treated as one for baiting
purposes, in order to reduce costs. This type of treat-
ment of several fields as one unit may of course only be
done if there are no rivers, waste land, cattle pens
or houses between the fields because these sites are
likely to be the places where rats have their nests.
Also it is most helpful if the fields in such blocks
are reaped at much the same time so that
they are at the same stage of growth when baiting is
commenced. The date for commencement of baittmg
should be some six months after reaping and
baiting should be continued at intervals of ten
weeks until the next harvest. A single "once-only"
treatment with baits will no doubt be of benefit but
will not provide very adequate control because rats will
continue to move into the fields after all baits have
A rat will need to eat Warfarin-poisoned bait over a
period of six-ten days to kill it, during which time it
may eat bait amounting to two-thirds of its body
weight so that one-half pound rat block is approxi-
mately sufficient to kill three rats. Our Jamaican roof
rats and Norway rats weigh about K/ lb. each.
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Determination of the need to use poisoned baits
may be made in two ways. An assessment of the rat
population may be made by using break-back (snap)
traps. One hundred of these spaced along the
periphery of fields, 20 yards apart and just inside
the field will give an indication of the number of
rats in the area. The first night's catch is counted and
those traps which have caught no rats are reset for
a second night. If the total catch of rats exceeds
eight then use of baits should be made. The method
suffers in Jamaica by pilferage of traps.
An assessment of damage to cane may be made at or I L~
just before harvest. Damage to more than four per
cent of the canes in each field indicates the need
for a baiting programme. An accurate assessment
of damage is difficult unless a sufficiently large
number of samples is taken. In a ten acre
field, ten samples each of 100 canes should be
chosen at random, throughout the field, for
This old sugar mill at Morgan Lewis, Barbados, is now out of use but
its Internal working parts are complete and in position.
With the sails in place and turning fast, the mill could only be slowed
The above article is a condensation of a paper presented at the 1970 by feeding it hard with cane.
general meeting of the Jamaica Association of Sugar Technologists. The vanes are made to face the wind by moving the diagonal leg
It is published with the permission of the author and the JAST. (right of picture) ;
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IRRIG AT ION
Are we doing enough about-
Caribbean farming has not yet come of age and
will not do so until our trained agriculturists
begin to live in the field with the farmers. In the
past our farming has followed the well-known
and the well-worn lore of Europe, and no serious
attempt has ever been made to sort out these
aIspects of European lore which apply to local
conditions. History dictated how Caribbean
farming began and those original ideas from
Europe govern local practice to this day.
The colonies were started by Europeans to
grow exotic foods for the metropolitan palate.
They came, they saw and they cut down the
wooded hills and began to plant. The first crop
planted was tobacco and this was followed by
cane, cocoa, coffee, cotton, bananas, etc. Today,
three hundred years later, we should take stock.
Civilization commenced when man ceased to be
a food gatherer and became an agriculturist.
Since that early period the pride of the farmer
has been to pass on to his son the lands that he had
diligently~ ploughed throughout his life. The
pride of the farmers mn general has been to pass
on to the next generation good soil and the
wisdom learned in handling the good soil. Soil
is the life blood of life on earth, for in real desert
nothing lives. Caribbean farming, to come of
age, must begmn to set as its standard the preser-
vation of soil and soil fertility so that futue
generations will want to and be able to hive in
Inde endence has come not too soon because
Caribbean farming should now begin the task
of appraising the past and present trends and
the tinpact of these trends on Caribbean soil and
the Caribbean community. Trinidad, for
example, has had a long history of growing cocoa.
It was grown for Europe and not the
Caribbean, and from the turn of the century to
the present day, yields have fallen from 2,000
pounds an acre to under 200 pounds per acre -
national average. When it became obvious that
yields were falling, the scientists went in and
sought to increase the yields. Clonals were pro-
duced to lift yields for the anxious market.
Between 1945 and 1968, the Trinidad e~vern-
ment spent 23 million dollars on subsidy/ for
cocoa mn an attempt to raise the yields. he
yields have not gone up, they have gone down
fifty per cent. This has been a bitter blow to
country life, and a serious case can be made to
show tat the subsidy merely helped to keep the
farmer in business longer to help to make the
cocoa manufacturer happy.
Evidence is now piling up to show that cocoa
lives and thrives on a very high orgamec content
in the soil and that two hundred years of
growing cocoa has led to erosion and leaching
of the soil. Some people don't see erosion, but
all who look carefully can recognize its creeping
presence. For erosion, some people advocate
contour drains. All such pole however, fail to
appreciate the magnitude ofte problem. One
in~ch of rain represents 21,000 gallons of water
per acre. As three inches of rain are often re-
corded in one day it would need drains capable
of holding 63,000 gallons to the acre.
Eroded land is baked in the tropical sun and
becomes a mud cake. The first rains that come
beat the top hardened la er. Pieces of the
hardened layer break off and move and the lay-
ers below follow. If the soil is examined after the
first few showers it will be seen that only the
top quarter of an inch (the sun-hardened part)
is moist. The rest is dry. If the land was not
asks Dr. Richardson in his-
Letter from ac Farmer
Dr. Richardson is a farmer and medical practitioner in Trinidad -
see letter from a Farmer Caribbean Farming, April 1969.
eroded the moisture would be visible two and
three inches thick so we see that the ability of
the land to receive and totransmit water is
affected by the erosive process.
When soil is protected by a natural carpet of
leaves, water never strikes the soil, it hits the
most recently dead leaves, then passes down-
ward to more decayed leaves which act as blott-
ing paper, and the blotting paper passes on the
water by gravity-osmosis. The soil receives
moisture from this organic mat, and once the
soil is moist it takes in water more readily than
when it is dry. Storm water run off from the
land is clear when the organic mat is adequate.
In a natural rain-forested area, the first impact
of the falling rain is received and lessened by
leaves of the taller trees, then by the second and
third stages, then by the dead dry leaves on the
ground. Below the dry leaves lie the burrows of
the earh earthworms and other creatures which
help to make a natural wick of the top two in~
ches of soil.
Caribbean a riculture must take into considera-
tion the fact that all the known facts of the
science came from areas in which the rainfall
normally is between 30-60 inches a year. When
the English first landed in Barbados the whole
island was wooded. They cut down the forest
and by thus interfering with a balance rendered
the Scotland Bay district unstable and erosion
and land subsidence has become a sizeable prob.
lem. Some years ago, about 300 acres of
Barbadian! soil fell into the sea, and recently
efforts are being made to halt this danger. In
Trinidad, two hundred years ago, ships used to
careen in the St. Ann's river. Today it is a
dry river. It is a dry river because the forests
have gone, the carpet of leaves has gone, the
soil has gone. Hence, when the rain falls in the
St. Ann's hills all the water goes to the sea in a
Tons of soil travel down to the sea with every
heavy shower of rain, and this situation has been
deteriorating with the years. Caribbean govern-
ments must look at the problem. They should
do this because this generation cannot with
honour pass on to the next generation badly
eroded soil. The condition is even more com-
plex than this because the underground aqua-
ehrs are being affected.
A mere five years ago, Trinidad was able to draw
egt million gallons of water a day from the
susil reservoirs, today it can take up only
five. The more the leaf carpet and organic
material leave the soil, the less water enters the
soil, and once the aquafers lose their potency,
they rarely come back. As a result, we face a
water problem as well as a soil problem.
Soil erosion must become a matter for scientific
observation so that rehabilitation of our hills
and valleys can be started
The writer has seen a plant two feet high growing
in a crevice fifteen feet up in a stone wall in a
Port-of-Spain street in whiich weeks without rain
go by. He has seen crotons, pomeracs,
mangoes and other plants do well on eroded soils
whils~t other plants never move, and quickly
die. Erosion can be and must be combatted.
The writer has demonstrated that certain timber
trees are anti-erosive in that they butress and
send roots above the ground. These roots hold
leaves and water back as they often run across
the contours. When this occurs an annual in-
crement of dead leaves is added back and new
soil is slowly created. As yet, no fruit trees
with these qualities have been noted.
Caribbean governments should take a second
look at forestry, for forestry can be the basis of
a furniture industry for ex ort. Such an indus-
try can have place for skle desi ners, and
craftsmen. Such an industry wou d employ
many people at all levels. Good wooden furni-
ture wil never go out of fashion.
The writer has come to the conclusion that the
Caribbean has not been selected by nature as a
food grown area iven the tropical down-
pours which literally beats the soil out of the
earth. The writer has seen tomatoes being
grown under glass in Canada, and has come to
the conclusion that the Caribbean farmer wouhe
have to design new systems to make use of the
.profuse- sunlight, and to shed the excess-wate
wNhich pour out of the heavens. The open air
with its down ours will steadily erode the land
which will produce less anct less.
in yOur subscription today
that farmers read
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229 Marcus Garvey Drive, KingPton 11. Tel: 37028/9
Ultra Low Volume (ULV) spraying is the application
of chemicals in very low total volumes of liquid
compared with conventional spraying. Convention-
al methods of spraying involve application ranging
from five gallons per acre by use of mist-blowers to
100 gallons per acre by use of knapsack sprayers.
Onthe other hand ULV spraying has been shown to
veeffective control with rate of application as
owas one to four pints per acre. From the con-
trol of locusts and grasshoppers on open range-
land, the technique has been extended to crops such
as cotton, rice and bananas where the cost of
pesticide and its application forms a major part of
the total cost of crop production.
Since ULV methods use only a fraction of the
quantity of liquid used by conventional methods to
give equivalent pest control, small containers may be
used and refilling is less frequent. Hence, the
hazards of mixing -pesticides is avoided and much
time is saved since it will no longer be necessary to
make frequent journeys to water supply points.
ULV methods employ the use of prepacked ULV
oil-based sprays and can therefore be used in arid
countries. In addition the hazards associated with
mixing of pesticides on site, are eliminated. On
account of the greatly reduced quantities of
liquid used the time taken to spray a given area
will be considerably less.
ULV sprayers are designed to produce a large
number of small droplets at the optimum size for
effective crop cover. These droplets are some one
hundred times smaller than those produced by
conventional equipment. These fine droplets are
obtained by feeding the liquid to be sprayed on to
a disc spinning at the rate of 7,000 to 8,000 revs
per min. Droplets are thrown from the edge of the
disc and reach their target by means of a
combination of air movement, the micro climate
inside the crop and gravity.
The relationship of droplet size to theoretical
coverage may be illustrated as follows:-
Size of droplet
No. of droplets per sq. in.
with 1 pint per acre
This means that the number of droplets produce I
from a given quantity of liquid will increase as
their diameter decreases. Hence, reducing the
size of the droplet will result in increased coverai e
and better penetration of the foliage.
Of e ~ual importance to producing small droplet
izor thorough coverage is the necessity to en-
sure that the droplet remains at this size until th,
moment of its deposition on the target surface.
This bettery-powered machine sprays 4-5 acres/hr.
ULTRA LOW-VOLUM E SPRAYI NG
This is achieved by using carrier liquids that do not
evaporate, the preferred materials being special
oils. These oils must be non-volatile, non-
phytotoxic and must not taint crops; they should
dissolve the pesticide without destroying or having
interactions with the chemical. Oil-based sprays
have this additional advantage they are less
affected by wet weather wash-off. They offer a
greater number of potential spraying days, since
spraymg can be carried out on wet foliage, and even
during rain if necessary.
(JLV techniques have been used for control of
Sigatoka disease in millions of acres of bananas for
over fifteen years. In Indonesia 750,000 acres of
rice have been sprayed by aircraft four times during
one season to control insects, resulting in 75% in-
creases in yield over untreated control areas.
Locust control has also been achieved using as little
as V4 fl.0z. per acre of spray liquid (1 gallon per
In addition to aerial application by ULV methods,
it is now possible to apply pesticides by ground
equipment. In fact, 2,200 acres of cotton have been
sprayed weekly using 100 hand carried ULV
sprayers, in Kenya providing excellent insect
Ground equipment varies from hand-held battery-
operated sprayers to petrol-driven, electrical, or
tractor mounted sprayers. The hand held sprayers
are powered by 4, 8, or 16 standard 1.5 volt dry cell
batteries and weigh 4-5 lbs. when loaded.
Petrol-powered machine for ULV spraying has range of 12-15 feet.
They are useful for crops which grow to a maximum
height of 9 ft.
The spray is released at a height of 3 ft. above the
crop which-will provide an approximate swath width
of 10 ft. A single operator walking at a forward
speed of approximately one yard per second is able to
spray 4-5 acres/hour, applying one pint of spray per
acre. This compares with conventional spraying
methods which cover only 2V/2 acres per day.
Of special interest also is a small portable petrol
driven machine of 8V/21b. wt. with an effective range
of 12-15 ft. which can be used for ground, bush or
A tractor-mounted twin outlet ULV sprayer is also
available for orchards and vineyards while electri-
cally driven models are available for glasshouses,
domestic and industrial buildings.
Special formulations for use in these sprayers
were developed initially by Shell Research for Turbair
Sprayers Ltd. and include formulations of Copper,
Zineb and Karathane fungicides; and malathion,
vapona, dimethoate and Gardona insecticides as well
as 1-Naphthylacetic acid -in highly refined white oil
which reduces the shedding of fruit (e.g. apples and
pears) before harvesting and during picking
Light weight 4-5 Ib. makes for flexirbility
A modest beginning has been made to supply
cucumbers to the Florida market.
Shipment for the first year or two was by air but is
now more often by sea in refrigerated containers.
A few farmers in Jamaica grow 40 50 acres each
and join in processing the crop through one plant.
Cucumbers from the field being dumped into chilling washing tank I
Cucumbers packed for export
Although Sea Island cotton (V 135, VH 8) is a crop
unique to the West Indies and is noted for its
length of staple (2 to 2 1/3 inches), strength of
fibre, good visual a pearance, long: life and dur-
abilit Caribbean farmers are all tYoo aware of the
problems encountered in growing, harvesting and ex-
porting this crop. Sea Island cotton achieved its
fullest commercial development in the 1930's
although significant agricultural improvements -
particularly the development of the VH 8 hybrid
have been made since that time. Contributing to
the decline of West Indian Sea Island cotton in the
past twenty years have been:
(1) competition from Egyptian and Sudanese
cottons (notably GIZA 45 cotton which
has a 1 5/8 to 1%/ inch staple);
(2) competition from synthetic wash-and-wear
(3) low prices the price of lint (approxi-
mately $1.25 BWI per pound) has risen only
slightly in the past two decades;
(4) difficulty in obtaining labour to harvest the
crop. Sea Island cotton must still be
harvested by hand as the bolls ripen at
different times and existing mechanical pick-
ers break the fibres.
With so many problems in the past, Caribbean farmer s
may wonder why there has been recent renewed in-
terest in this crop. The~ answer to this qestion lies
in the fact that concrete attempts have been made
towards the solution of the above problems.
(1) Current tension and unrest in the Middle
East have made the marketing of Egyptian
and Sudanese cotton somewhat unstable
and suppliers of long staple cotton are
turning to more dependable growers.
(2) Research by the West Indian Sea Island
Cotton Association (known as WISICA)
into the application of an easy care finish
fOr Sea Island cotton fabrics is underway
Grading cucumbers for export
and an uncrushable line of Sea Island
cotton knits is being marketed with
3) While present prices are still low, farmers
can increase their own cotton profits by
increasing cotton yields per acre. Taking
St. Vincent growers as an example, their
yields averaged 635 lbs of lint/acre in
1963/64 while government experimental
plots on the same island at the same time
averaged 1,000 lbs of lint/acre.
1) WISICA is experimenting with a new type
of mechanical picker (which is to be tested
in Barbados this coming December).
despitee solutions to the above problems the
~armer must not forget that Sea Island cotton is
asceptible to a variety of pests (pink ballworms,
:otton stainers, leafworms) and diseases
Fusarium wilt) and so new plantings must pro-
~-eed with caution.
_arly in 1968, the British Ministry of Overseas
Development sponsored WISICA in a program
to (A) stimulate interest in greater production of
Sea Island cotton in the Caribbean and (B)
initiate a program of marketing and promotion
for the fibre. Emphasis on the latter was
centered on marketing West Indian Sea Island
cotton as a luxury crop in an effort to re-create
a demand for this unique fibre. As part of this
program a gold and black label
Sea iSln COtO)
wlas made avail-
ab le to registered growers, manufacturers and
advertisers of true West Indian Sea Island cotton.
To further the other objective the Island govern-
ments of Barbados, Antigua, Nevis, Montserrat,
St. Kitts and St. Vincent were visited by a
representative of WISICA during the summer of
1969. Governments promised the following
acreage to that association:
250 to 500 acres
In actuality, the number of acres planted on each
island was "disappointingly small" according to
Mr. A.C. Knight of the West India Committee.
Marketing success was however very good and
these two factors led to a shortage of the fibre
at the end of this year. The projected plnting
program for the 1970/71 session is as ollows:
Note: Mustique, an exporter of cotton, markets
its crop privately and is not a member of WISICA.
Sea Island cotton is a luxury crop used in the
manufacture of sportswear, shirts, underwear,
bedding and cotton knits. If the marketing
program for West Indian Sea Island cotton is
successful, (and all recent trends show that it
should be) there should be a greater demand for
this unique West Indian crop which,would
benefit at least six countries in the Caribbean.
WISICA estimates a market world demand at
3.3 million pounds of lint per year. Existing
production of Sea Island cotton is only one-
tenth of this amount!i
Clearly a specialized market for West Indian
Sea Island cotton exists. While every effort is
being made by WISICA to create a demand and
to help growers overcome labour problems, all
efforts to increase production rest with the
r he author wishes to thank Mr. Roy Bignell, Chief
Executive of WISICA during the summer of 1969 and
Mr. A.C. Knight of the West India Committee for their
help in the writing of this article.
SEA ISLAND COTTON
ISLAND-WIDE SA LES AND SER VICE
with the revolutionary rugged and
This versatile machine with its many at ~hments is capable of bush
cutting, ploughing, refining sowing, weeding, reaping, pumping aet.
'Ye farmers ask for a demonstration and be convinced how to get the
most from your land.
TWO OF THE MANY OPTIONAL ATTACHMENTS
RIDGING MOTORS MOULDBOARD
For ridging special PLOUGH
crops with width Turns a perfect
"gto suit all types furrow at a
S* of plants. depth of 4 to
6 In, with a
for depth and
Other attachments are Seeder, Thresher, Potato Lifter, ted with Disc
--Rotary Grass Cutter, Trailer, Dorer Blade, Static couIte r &
/1 Rirrger, Reversible Plough, P.T.O. and Flexible Drive. Skimmer.
Power and Versatility!
That's DA VID BRO WN!
Whether your needs require
the 1200 72 hp,
990 -55 hpu, or the
9. IP880 46 hp Selectamatic
SDAVID BROWN TRACTOR -
~i~t~for LAND PREPARATION or
4 HAULAGE,all live up to
:4 the same super standards
i of construction, movability,
~--~Ce s ,comfort and safety. &
FULL PARTS AND SERVICE AVAILABLE BY FACTORY TRAINED MECHANICS
US TELL YOU MORE ABOUT WRITE, CALL OR PHONE: 1968
AVIDle B3ROifvll P.O. POLACK LTD.,
42, BEECHWOLOD AVE. KINGSTON 5 PHONE: 67441-3
TABLE 1.--Proximate Analysis of Silages
Silage type matter Protein Fat Fiber extrct Ash
- - - - - - -Per cent- - - - - - - -
"or silage 26.9 9.3 4.0 21.6 58.7 6.7
Forage sorghum silage 25.9 7.3 2.5 30.9 45.2 10.4
Grass silage 23.7 6.9 2.8 31.4 48.1 10.8
Corn ,ilage 27.7 8.3 3.2 24.6 57.0 6.9
Forage sorghum silage 27.6 7.2 2.5 33.7 46.7 9.8
Grain sorghum silage 25.0 8.8 3.2 30.8 45.2 12.0
Grass silage 25.7 7.4 2.7 35.0 44.7 10.2
TABLE 2.-Performance of Steers, by, Treatment, for 84 Days, Trial 1
Item Corn silage Forage sorghum silage Grass silage
Number of steers 14 14 14 14 14 14
Initial weight, Ib. 330 330 327 330 327 327
Silage, Ib. 22.6 23.7 25.7 21.4 31.1 28.5
Grain,' Ib. 3.8 3.8 3.8
Protein mix,2 lb. 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0
Dry matter, Ib. 7.9 11.5 8.5 10.7 9.2 11.9
Daily gain, Ib. 1.37 1.50 0.56 1.13 0.48 1.06
'Grain: equal portions of ground corn and ground sorghum grain.
2Protein mix: 950 Ib. cottonseed meal, 49 Ib. oyster shell flour, I Ib. vitamin A.
Reprinted from LOUISIANA AGRICULTURE
Published by Agricultural Experiment Station, Louisiana
and Agricultural and Mechanical College
EATHER, climate, and soil
conditions are generally favorable in
Southwest Louisiana for production
of silage crops. Recent developments
in mechanization have reduced costs
of producing, storing, and feeding
;oughages as silages. Livestock pro-
grams in which silages are fed need
to be developed within Louisiana
since there is a good supply of feeder
calves available and a market exists
for fed steers and heifers.
Two trials were conducted at the
Iberia Ljivestock Experiment Station
to compare the feeding value of var-
ious silage crops and to study systems
of producing beef of acceptable quali-
ityy on various silage programs. Corn
silage, forage sorghum silage, and
grass silage were used in both trials
but grain sorghum silage was fed
only in the second trial. The results
therefore are quite preliminary. How-
ever, they do give some indication of
the relative value of the silages and
In both trials, corn (Asgrow Hy-
brid 502) was planted in rows in
the early spring and ensiled when
grain was in the medium to hard
dough stage. The hybrid forage sor-
ghum (Beefbuilder) for Trials 1 and
2, and the hybrid grain sorghum
(Tasco) grown for Trial 2 were
broadcast planted in May or June
and harvested when grain was in the
hard dough stage. The grass silage
in both trials was ensiled in the fall
of the year from pastures containing
a mixture of dallis, bermuda, carpet,
and crab grass, which were fertilized
in June or Jtdly. -Proximate analysis
of the silages is shown in Table 1.
Rocedures in Trials
The procedures used in the two
trialS Were aS fOll0WS.
Trial 1.--Six lots of 14 crossbred
steer calves with an average weight
Of 330 lb. were fed silage for 84
days. Each group received 2 lb. of
a prOcein-mineral mix per head per
day. Three of the groups were also
fCB R grain mixture CODSISting Of
equal parts of ground corn and
gfOund sorghum grain. The grain
mixture was increased slightly at
the beginning of each 28-day period.
Bone meal and salt were provided
free choice to all lots. Feeding was
done in the morning and in the after-
IIberia Livestock Experiment Station,
Jeanerette. Authors are, respectively: Re-
search Physiologist, U.S. Department of
Agriculture; Associate, Animal Science;
Associate, Animal Science; Associate Pro-
fessor, Animal Science; Superintendent,
Fattening Steers With
WX. L. REYNOLDs, H. C. GONSOULIN, N. T. POCHE', T. M. DEROUEN
B ulls like this Jamaican B rah man champion are used to produce cross-bred steers of the type mentioned in this story,
and concentrate -168 days; 4)
grain sorghum silage, no concent ate
--84 days, followed by grain or-
ghum silage and grain--112 d ys.
Table 3 (Page 8) shows the tr at-
ments and results in Trial 2.
Be~st Results from Corn Silage
The results of Trial 1 and Tri; 1 2
both indicate forage sorghum sil: ge,
grass silage, or grain sorghum sil Ige
were not equal to corn silage in feed
value. Steers fed corn sdlage, .or-
ghum silage, or grass silage gained
1.37 lb., 0.56 lb., and 0.48 lb. per
day, respectively, for 84 days in Trial
1. Gamns of steers during the first 84
days in Trial 2 were: corn silage,
1.32 lb.; sorghum silage, 0.42 lb.;
grass silage, 0.64 lb.; and grain sor-
ghum silage, 0.68 lb. daily.
All groups of steers fed silage and
grain gained more rapidly than steers
fed silage only. Feeding an average
of 3.8 lb. of grain increased gain 0.13
lb. daily for corn silage groups, 0.57
lb. for sorghum silage groups, and
grain-fed group was fed for 112
more days, making a total of 196
days on feed. The group of steers fed
grain sorghum silage during the first
84 days was continued on the same
silage and was fed the corn-sorghum
gramn mixture for 112 days, making
a total of 196 days on feed.
The corn silage grain-fed group
was given 7 Ib. of grain per head
from 84-140 days and 9 lb. of grain
per head from 140 days to time of
slaughter. The forage sorghum sil.
age and grain sorghum silage groups
received 1 lb. more grain per head
daily per period. Steers in all lots re-
ceived 2.6 lb. of protein-mineral
mix per head daily. Throughout
Trial 2, feeding was done in the
morning and in the afternoon, and
all groups had access to bone meal
and salt at all times.
Preliminary information was thus
obtained on the following four sys-
tems of fattening steers: (1) corn
silage, no concentrate--196 days;
(2) corn silage and concentrate _
168S days; (3) forage sorghum silage
noon. The treatments and the results
in Trial 1 are shown in Table 2.
Trial 2.--Six groups of crossbred
steers weighing an average of about
377 lb. were fed for 84 days as fol.
lows: Group 1--corn silage; Group
2--corn silage and a grain mixture;
Group 3--forage sorghum silage;
Group 4--forage sorghum silage
and a grain mixture; Group 5--grass
silage; Group 6--grain sorghum sil.
age. The grain mixture fed in Groups
2 and 4 consisted of equal parts of
ground corn and ground sorghum
grain and was increased slightly at
the beginning of each 28-day period.
All groups received 2 lb. of a pro.
tein-mineral mix per head per day.
The grass silage group (Group 5)
and the forage sorghum non-grain-
fed group (Group 3) in Trial 2 were
discontinued after 84 days. The corn
silage grain-fed group and the forage
sorghum sil'age grain-fed group were
fed for another 84 days, making 168
days on feed. To attain the approxi-
mate weight of' the grain-fed corn
silage group, the corn silage non-
TABLE 3.-Performlnce of 5fears, by Treatments, for Feeding Period, Trial 2
Forage Gmras sorghum
lism Corn silage sorghum silage silage silog.
Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5 Group 6
Days on trial 196 168 84 168 84 496
Initial weight, Ib. 376 376 376 377 378 38o
initial condition 7 8 7 8 8 a
Fire 8 day.-
',be Ib. 30.3 2 .2 24.9 I .9 26.8 324
Protein .ix,2 Ib. 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.o
Dry matter, Ib. 10.2 12.0 8.7 11.3 8.7 lo.o
Daily gain, Ib. 1.32 1.75 0.42 1.28 0.64 0.68
Weight 84 days, Ib. 487 521 411 484 432 436
Condition score 7 8 5 6 6 6
85 days to finish:
Silgage Ib. 38.2 24.2 24.5 23.8
Grain,' lb. 7.6 8.6 8.8
Protein mix,' Ib. 2.6 2.6 2.6 2.6
Dry mailer, Ib. 12.9 15.7 16.6 16.0
Daily gain, Ib. 1.82 1.99 I.74 1.84
Daily gain entire period, Ib. 1.59 1.87 1.51 134
Weight 168 days, Ib. 60 688 630 591
,egt1 ","ps. I 688 9 a
Condition scor 9 a
Shrink, Ib. 14.5 14.5 3.5 11.o
as ig per cnt of final weight 5 .6 576 50 86 5 .9
Dresing per cent of slaughter weight n57.3 58.48 53.14 56.93
Carcuss weighs 386 397 333 360
U.S.D.A. carcuss grade 10 10 8 8
'Grin: equal paonrti of ground corn and ground sorghum grain.
SProt.in .ix: 9oolb. c........d meal, 48 Ib. urea, 25 Ib. oyster shell flour, 25 Ib. borm meal, 2 Ib.
grain gained 1.74 lb. daily, while
steers fed grain sorghum silage and
grain gained 1.84 lb. daily.
Slaughter Data Obtained
To attain the same slaughter
weight and condition, steers fed corn
silag and no concentrate required a
28-day longer feeding period than
steers fed corn silage and grain.
Grain-fed steers also had higher
dressing percentages and heavier car-
cass weights. The average carcass
grade of the two groups was the
Carcasses of steers fed forage sor-
ghum silage and grain were 64 lb.
lighter than those of steers fed corn
silage and grain for 168 days. They
Were RISO lower in grade than car-
casses from the corn silage grain-fed
steers. The grain sorghum silage
group of steers did not appear to car-
ry sufficient condition for market
acceptability after being fed grain
and grain sorghum silage for 84
days. However, at the end of 112
days, carcasses carried sufficient con-
dition for market acceptability and
were 27 lb. heavier than carcasses of
steers fed forage sorghum silage and
grew rapidly and fields contained
very few grasses. More grasses
(mostly crab grass) infiltrated fields
of grain sorghum. Birds damaged
grain sorghum fields and reduced
Steer Performance After 84 Days
The most surprising group was
the steers fed corn silage and no
grain. They gained 1.82 lb. daily
from day 85 to day 196. Steers fed
corn silage and grain gained 1.99 lb.
daily during this period. Thus, grain
feeding only increased the gains of
steers fed corn silage by 0.25 lb.
per head daily.
Recent trials conducted at the sta-
tion substantiate that gains of 1.7 to
1.8 lb. could be expected during this
period for steers fed corn silage.
Steers fed forage sorghum silage and
0.58 lb. for grass silage groups in
Trial 1. Addition of grain to the ra-
tion had little effect on the consump-
tion of corn silage, but slightly de-
creased the consumption of sorghum
silage and grass silage.
In Trial 2, feeding 4.0 lb. of grain
for 56 days and 6.0 lb. from 57 to 84
days mecreased the gain of the corn
silage group by 0.43 lb. and the gain
of the sorghum silage group by 0.86
lb. Including grain in the ration'
however, decreased the consumption
of corn silage 27 per cent and sor-
ghum silage 20 per cent.
The failure of steers fed grain sor-
ghum silage to gain at a more rapid
rate in this study may have been
caused by the growth pattern of the
plants in the Gulf Coast environ-
ment. Hybrid forage sorghum plants
Method of Feeding
The economy of gain should large-
ly determine the system of feeding
to follow. A sorghum silage system
of feeding no grain for 84 days fol-
lowed by a sorghum silage and grain
ration would probably be the least
desirable because of the increased
input of protein and silage which in-
creases cost per pound of gain.
The corn silage, no grain system
of feeding would generally be the
most economical in Louisiana. Feed-
ing a low level of grain along with
the silage, however, reduces the
length of time required for steers to
reach an acceptable market grade. To
provide a uniform flow of cattle from -
the feed lot to the packer, both feed-
ing systems need to be utilized.
These preliminary data indicate
that steers fed sorghum silage rations
need another source of energy to
make adequate and economical gains
THERMO-PLASTICS JAMAICA LIMITED
45 Elma Crescent, Washington Boulevard,. Kingston 10. Telephone: 38747, 38841, 38842.
5" Slipe Road
71 Slipe Road
Hardware & Lumber
Spanish Town Road
W. L. Johnson
Waltham Park Road
Brown's X LCR Variety Store
Dor's (Mr. Lyn)
Charley's Windsor House
Chin See Brothers
LINSTEAD & OCHO RIOS
P.E. Stanigar & Sons
V.M. Bromfield Limited
Adrian Lee (Cheapside Store)
Jackson Williams & Sons
Reg. J. Lyn
ST. ANN'S BAY
THERE ARE ;:: :
PVC PIP ES!
Here's where you can buy Thermoco PVC pipes
Pressure Fittings and Solvent Cement
n1a previous issue we discussed painting of steel
;Yater storage drums. On this occasion, although we
vill be discussing a different type of surface -
Mlasonry, the same approach before application is
recommended PROPER SURFACE PREPARATION.
Masonry surfaces, full cured and dried, provide receptive
surface for painting. Damp, uncured masonry surfaces
on the other hand present a substrate which can result
mn most pamnt coatings failing prematurely. This failure
shows itself in many ways e.g. blistering, crumbling,
cracking, flaking, etc. It is important therefore that
masonry surface be allowed a curing period of at
least two weeks prior to paint application.
Penetration of the walls of masonry water tanks (or
swimming pools) by soil water from without, is another
cause of paint failure in many tanks which are built below
ground level. It is advisable therefore, that whenever
possible, these tanks be constructed on high ground.
Several paint systems are available for coating the
interior of water tanks and although in this article
we will be discussing two of those now commonly
used, I suggest that the paint companies be
consulted for advise on surface preparation and
paint selection when you decide to paint your tank.
Latex paints (such as Glidden's non-homogenised
Spred Satin) and chlorinated rubber based coatings
(such as Glidden's Pli-Namel), are two easy -to-
apply inexpensive paint systems, which when applied
properly provide efficient, economical long term
beauty and protection. Each system is described
Surface Preparation (for both systems). The
surface should be fully cured and dried (for at least two
weeks). All surface contaminants such as dirt,
grease, etc. should be removed.
System A Latex System (Non-Homogenised Spred
SSatin) -'Two coats Latex emulsion paint applied by
brush or roller.
Recoat time Allow one hour between applications.
Coverage 350 sq. ft./gallon
Curing Time Alow 2 days curing before filling tank.
N.B. (a) If you select this system make sure that the
brand you select is intended for use in water
(b) If you choose Glidden, be sure to specify
Non-homogenised Spred Satin.
System B Chlorinated Rubber Based System
(Glidden Pli-Namel) Apply two coats chlorinated
Rubber Based Paint by brush or roller.
Recoat Time Allow three hours recoat time
Coverage 200 sq. ft./gdlon
Curing time Allow 3 days before filling tank.
Before closing I would again mention the importance
of good surface preparation. Any paint system,
no matter how expensive, will perform only as good
as the quality of the surface over which it is applied.
A lot of money is wasted annually simply because
many people ignore this very essential aspect of paint
HOW DO I PAINT IT?
Masonry Water Storage Tanks
your live stock k
Only PURINA CHOWS, micro-mixed for high
quality control can produce the best results from
Remember there's no substitute for quality,
and quality is what you get from PURINA
CHOWS which can liven up your economy by
giving you more profit from your livestock. It
pays to buy quality feed at the red and white
checkerboard sign of your Jamaica Feeds dealer.
THE JAMAICA LIVESTOCK ASSOCIATION LTD.
DOMESTIC SALES LTD.
SAMAICA AG RICULTU RAL SOC IETY
Working together in Jamaica to produce better food at lower cost.
All farmers with cattle to feed know that there are periodic shortages of grass
because of inadequate rain. There are several ways that such shortages may be made
good but th~e problem is to find the most economic one. The answer will depend on a
number of interacting factors such as availability of land,, of types of pastures and
FIL~~LIFTH irrigation, of capital, of knowle dge and of skill, and
-A the returns expected from meat or milk. i It is not possible
here to give detailed recommendations about many of these
HUNGRY GAP things because the Caribbean is a large area with diverse
economic and physical conditions. Examples quoted will
not necessarily apply elsewhere than in the country specified.
The major source of food for cattle, sheep and goats is grass, and usually this is
the cheapest source available to the farmer. However, some farmers have very
limited supplies of grass that have to be harvested from roadsides. and waste ground,
and they may be tempted to use purchased foods that are expensive, or crop
residues. The latter are usually cheap but their quality may be very low and
With little or no pasturag~e of his own, the small farmer is in
difficulty during dry seasons because his stock are not genetically capable of
responding economically to the feeding of proprietary concentrates. Thus the cost
of such feeds often exceeds the extra income from the sale of meat or milk. Farmers
of the group frequently keep stock for reasons other than economic ones, under these
circumstances they are well advised to feed their animals on grass and the cheapest
available concentrates, e.g. citrus pulp and coconut meal, and to arrange for their
cows to calve as near as possible to the beginning of the rainy season when fresh
grass is plentiful.
Farmers with only a few acres of land available for feeding cattle are well advised
to grow enough of such forages per acre to feed four cows throughout the year.
The farmer with 20-50 acres of land has a wider choice
of options to fill the hungry gap. He may just leave one or two fields of grass
ungrazed during the wet season for grazing in the dry season. However, he must
reme mber that such 'hay-on-the-hoof' is of low quality, and he will need to
supgple~ment it withr-expensive protein concentrates if he is to get any production from
his animals. Not only is such dry fodder low in protein and high in fibre content, but
much of what has been grown is lost through rotting, insect attack, and shattering
when very dry. There is also the very real danger of fire destroying the crop
before it can be grazed.
The Small farmer.
Irrigation. Another choice, with those farmers who have a nearby source of water
at a reasonable cost, is irrigation. If the land is flat, he can practice flood
irrigation through ditches and canals, and if it is hilly he can use sprinklers
and a pump. The sprinkler system will cost a lot more in terms of capital equipment,
but may pay where the water is very cheap or free. A small dam across a stream may
permit the farmer to store water for irrigation of pastures in the dry season. How-
ever when such water and irrigation equipment are available, farmers usually find
it more profitable to grow cash crops rather than forage crops.
On steep land where soil erosion would be a serious hazard under arable
cropping, grass pastures and irrigation may be the best means of using the full
potential of the land. In every case the farmer must work out the economic
prospects of any particular system before he applies it to his particular farm.
Pastures and forage crops generally yield more in the wet than
the dry season, but farm herds have a fairly constant year-round demand for
food. The farmer's problem is to match supply and demand, and he has several
means of doing this. We have already mentioned the purchase of concentrates, the
use of irrigation water, and the growing of special forage crops for use in the
dry season. Along with these he may apply extra mitrogenous fertilizer at the
beginning of the dry season in order to stimulate the growth of high quality grass
to feed his cattle. The farmer may also improve his soil drainage in order to
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prevent a depression in growth due to waterlogging towards the end of the
By judicious management of the breeding cycles of his animals, the farmer can arrange
for most of them to begin lactations around the end of a dry season so that the
mother and young have access to fresh young and highly nutritious grass that will
stimulate milk production and growth.
Conservation. The conversion of wet season surpluses into hay or silage that can
be stored for feeding in time s of shortage of fresh pasture, is commonly practised
by farmers in temperate countries where winter conditions do not allow grazing.
Snow or ice may cover the grass too deeply, or the soil may be too wet to carry
cattle without severe damage to the pastures. In tropical countries animals are
generally able to roam about on pastures during the dry season even though they may
not get much to eat from them. As a consequence, farmers in the tropics have not
been forced to conserve fodder as fellow farmers have in colder climates.
The making of hay or silage requires a good deal of skill~if it is to be a
profitable venture resulting in a good quality stored feed. It bears repeating that
the quality of hay or silage cannot be better than that of the fresh material from
which it was made, and it is a most unprofitable exercise to spend much time, labour
or money on conserving poor quality grass. The protein content is a good measure of
quality, and this should be 8-10% or more of the dry matter if conservation is to be
worthwhile. This means harvesting the crop after it has been growing for six wekks or
less, and fertilizers will be necessary in order to ensure a good yield, and improve
the protein content.
Climate. Much depends on the rainfall pattern and the chances of consecutive dry days
at the right time of the year for hay making. Some West.Islands, like Antigua,
have a climate better suited to hay making in the field than have other islands like
Trinidad, or parts of Jamaica. Under these latter circumstances it is safer to provide
some means of supplementing the sun's power to dry hay sufficiently for safe storage.
Successful silage-making is much less dependent on weather conditions, but experimer
have shown that too much moisture can prevent the proper fermentation of the crop i
the silo and reduce the amount of dry matter that animals can eat. Dry days are
therefore advantageous for silage making also.
In Trinidad, the minimum relative humidity rarely falls below 500 in the day
and usually rises to 1000 at night as the temperature falls from around 870
to 70aF. Hay lying on the ground is likely to be rewetted at night with dew.
In other islands the relative humidity varies in a similar way, but temperatures
are generally lower in the more northerly ones.
Wind is a fine drying agent, but very few records are available except at airports.
Windspeed at St. Augustine in Trinidad is very low from June to January (mean of
1.35 M.P.H.) and low during the other four months (mean of 3.18 m.p.h.); at Piarco
Airport it is 2.3 m.p.h. more that at St. Augustine. In other islands it is often
much greater than this, for example at Seawell, Barbados, the mean monthly windsper
varies from 8.9 m.p.h. in September to 14.1 m.p.h. in June, Thus hay-making in the
field is much more feasible in Barbados (at least near Seawell) than in Trinidad.
The intensity of sunlight in the tropics is greater than in temperate regions, but
its duration in summer is much less. Thus the time available for cuin ha ac
is only about eight hours.
Hay making Field drying of hay is a simple process but losses from rain and wind
can be large. Owing to the likelihood of rain or dew, there is a danger that the hay
may be spoilt, and various methods of protecting the hay while it is drying have
Once the grass has lost enough moisture to be easily handled, it may be stacked on
wooden racks in the field so that wind can easily pass through and remove moisture.
This technique also prevents heavy dew from leaching the hay lying on the ground.
Racks can easily be made from old fence posts and rough laths.
Caribbean Farming 27
Partly dried hay may be formed into small piles in the field with the top layer raked
so as to allow rain to run off rather than run inside. These piles are small enough
to allow wind to pass through and carry away moisture. When hay has been dried to
about 50% moisture content, it can be piled in the field or carried under cover
for drying to finish before the hay is stored. Once hay is dried to 40% moisture,
it becomes slightly brittle and any rough handling will break off the valuable
leaf, leaving only stems. The hay must not contain more than 15-20% moisture when it
1S StOred, Of lt W111 go mouldy. A simple test is to bend leaves, if they break easily,
the hay is dry enough for storage.
Barn hay driers are used in many countries where field drying is risky. The
drier is basically a square or rectangular tower of wood, brick or concrete with
a wire floor raised about two feet off the bottom. Partly dried hay is stacked inside
tO a maximum depth of about fifteen feet. Air is blown by a fan into the space
A. Pangola hay in window
B. Reinforced concrete
Tower Silos bu it at
Government farrn, Hope,
Jarnaica in the 1920's.
c. Trench sno
D. Collecting Pangola hay.
below the wire, and it passes up through the drying hay above the wire. Once the
hay has been dried down to a 20% moisture content, it can be left to'finish drying
naturally in the drier, or in another stack, or after being baled. There is no
need to artificially heat the air being blown through the drier, but hot air will
speed up drying. Air should not be blown through at night or at any other time when
its relative humidity is above 90%. As this varies considerably from place to
place, and sometimes from day to day, it is a good idea to invest in a wet and dry
bulb thermometer and some tables so that relative humidity can be measured on the
The moisture that must be removed from grass in order to make hay is
in two places, on the outside of the plant, and inside the leaves and stems. The
former is relatively easy to remove, but the latter is not. With thick stems, drying
can be prolonged for several days unless the stems are cracked open. This may
be done at an early stage by means of a crimping machine, but the capital outlay
on such a machine will be justified only when large quantities of hay are made.
The same is true of any machinery used for drying hay, and the use of machinery
cannot be justified for farms with only small acreages available for conservation,
or where grass is of poor quality. The quality of hay depends on that of the
parent grass as well as the efficiency of conservation. Poor quality grass may
be so because it has been allowed to grow for too long, or to grow too slowly, or
because it contains inferior grass species, or too many weeds. Hay may be of poor
quality because the grass was of poor quality, or because it was badly weathered in
making, or because it was stored when insufficiently dry, or because it was allowed
to get wet agamn.
Some experiments carried out by Wilcox and Cowlishaw in Trinidad indicated that
turning the grass a maximum of three times daily for two dry days was sufficient
to reduce the moisture content to 20-25%. Hay made in this way could be safely stored
under cover, where further drying took place. Barn hay drying with a.fan but no heater
was also found to be economic at the prevailing high price of imported hay, but
it may not be so under differing circumstances. More trials are obviously essential
before-firm. recommendations can be madle.
The conservation of surplus wet-season grass as silage has often
been advocated for the humid tropics, but a very limited amount of experimental data
has been published, possibly because of the poor results obtained. The making of
good silage is not a simple matter, and many farmers have been disappointed with
the results of their attempts. The various steps in the process must be carried
out correctly so that the right type of fermentation takes place.
As with hay, good quality silage can be made only from good quality forage. This
must be given fertilizers of the correct type at the right time in order to ensure
that the resulting crop has grown rapidly and is of high nutritive value. Specific
recommendations will depend on the particular soil and climate. The inclusion of
leguminous forages will raise the protein and mineral content of the crop being
ensiled, but this may reduce the overall yield per acre of dry matter and
Crops of grass and/or legumes may be harvested by hand or machinery. The fewer
times the crop is handled, the cheaper the process will be. However, forage-
harvesting the crop and putting the lacerated material straight into the silo may
result in too high a moisture content. The wrong type of fermentation will follow.
resulting in unpalatable silage and considerable leaching of nutrients.
The best silage is made when bacteria that produced lactic acid are
encouraged to multiply and other micro-organisms are suppressed. It is also
important to stop the action of plant enzymes in the cut forage as early as possible
to reduce the breakdown of complex carbohydrates to carbon dioxide, water and heat.
The presence of oxygen in the silo will increase the rate at which this breakdown
occurs and the resultant high temperature will seriously reduce the feeding value
of the silage.
Support our advertisers mention CARIBBEAN FARMING when writing.
Wilting the grass before putting it in the silo will raise the osmotic pressure in
the silage and suppress the growth of undesirable micro-organisms. These organisms
are also controlled by lowering the acidity (pH) of the silage below 4.5, and lactic
acid fermentation will do this. The bacteria producing lactic acid need plenty of
free sugars in order to multiply rapidly, and molases is added for this purpose.
Leguminous crops contain less sugar than do grass crops, hence the importance of
adding molasses at about 5 gallons per ton of green crop if this contains a high
proportion of legumes. The molasses must be well mixed with the crop if it is to be
Types of silo Whole cut grass is more easily wilted, but less easily compacted
in the silo in order to exclude air and prevent overheating. Chopping or lacerating
the crop will make it easier to compact and will also release sugars from the plant
cells. One method of preventing the entry of air and rain into the silo has been
tried successfully in Trinidad by Quarless and Cowlishaw. This method entails the
construction of large bag silos from butyl rubber sheeting 1/16th, and 1/32nd. inch
thickness. The bags may be of any shape and edges can be sealed with ordinary rubbe
solution or a special clip. The butyl rubber is highly resistant to rain and sun
and holes are easily patched. As soon as the silo has been filled, it is sealed and
the air sucked out with a vacuum pump. By the end of a month the crop has been
converted into good silage with very little waste, and even after 5 months there will
still be a very high proportion of good silage. Other types of silo are the pit, the
bunker and the tower. All these are difficult to seal and to keep free of air and
water. Plastic sheeting is sometimes used as a liner but it is easily torn and will
only last for one crop.
The siting of silos is important in order to reduce costs of handling the crop and
the made silage, as well as avoiding rainwater seepage. The advantages of the rubber
bag silo in this respect are obvious; it can be set up anyher wunith o nop site
preparation, it may be of any convenient size to ftteqatt fco en
harvested, it can be opened after sealing for the addition of further material,
and resealed without trouble.
There are a variety of crops that may be grown for ensiling, but the economics
of such a system of stock feeding must be carefully worked out. Mixtures of
green velvet bean, kudzu or cowpea have been used successfully in some parts
of the tropics, but much experimental work still needs to be done before firm
recommendations can be made.
All cattle owners are faced with the problem of filling the hungry
gap caused by lack of rain at certain times of the year. We have seen that this
problem can be overcome in several ways:
(a) purchasing expensive concentrates,
(b) utilizing crop residues and by-products,
(c) irrigation and/or fertilizing so that pastures continue to grow,
(d) growing special forage crops that can be harvested during dry periods.
(e) conserving wet season surpluses of fodder either as hay or silage for use in the
(f) adjusting the breeding and production phases of the cattle so that requirements
are less during the dry season.
Which of these methods the individual farmer uses will depend on a number of factors,
including his knowledge and skill, size of farm, number and productivity of his
stock, availability of capital and water for irrigation, availability of machinery,
distribution of rainfall during the year, soil fertility and market value of meat
and milk produced.
Two products from Boots
help you get better returns from you r
pigs, horses, chickens and calves.
Boots Piglet Safersan
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The sow's milk is short of iron. removing worms from horses, pigs,
One or two doses of Boots PAP will supply poultry and calves.
all the iron a piglet needs. Safersan is mixed with the
feed for easy mass dosing.
The BLUE OX is a small walking-tractor developed by a team
""ade by Ford Mtrs tor ue ortr n sml arm thni tro >ical
Seedbed and nursery soil treatment
for pest and disease control
is the title of a recently-published
17-page booklet written by Dr. J.E.
Edmunds as a production of the UWI
Department of Agricultural Extension.
The Department has also begun publication
of a newsletter covering its activities.
Some of our readers must have recognized our story
on banana costing (CARIBBEAN FARMING Jan. -
March 1970) as a reprint from WINBAN NEWS.
We are grateful to WINBAN and look forward to
continuing a pleasant association for the good of
farming in the region.
Reprinted from SUNSHINE STATE AGRICULTURAL REPORT
Published by the Agricultural Experiment Stations
of the University of Florida
Life Cycle of Strongyloides
The secret life
of strongyloides one of the
enemies of hogs is being
an Experiment Stations
Dr. Richard E. Bradley, associate parasitologist
in the Veterinary Science Department,
Gainesville, says two aspect of the strongyloide
life cycle make it difficult to control.
FiTSt is the finding that the worm enters the
newborn pig through the sow's milk. "This is
an unusual phenomenon in animals," Dr.
Bradley says. "In fact, there are only two knoa n
precedents for this type of infection; fur seals
and dogs pass hookworm larvae to their young
in this manner."
"We know of no other
animals are infected by
Dr. Bradley adds.
case in which farm
a parasite so early in life,"
Another thing that makes it difficult to control
strongyloides is that the worm can readily
change from parasite to free-living and back
agamn, Larvae that hatch on the ground can
live and multi ly there, without needing a host
animal. As a free-living form, the worm feeds
on organic matter in the soil. But, when a pig
comes along to be infected, the worm changes
into a parasite and invades the pig.
by choosing lots on the highest elevation to
obtan maimumdrainag~e and by avoiding
low, wet, or wooded areas.
As for drugs to kill the parasite, Dr. Bradley
says new drugs do a good job of killing the
parasites in the intestine, but these have yet to
be approved by the federal government for
use mn swine.
Control by drugs is doubly difficult because the
larvae do not remain in the intestine but migrate
to the udder fat of the sow. They remain
in a dormant stage in the fat and move to the
udder only a few hours before farrowing. None
of the anthelmintic drugs tested so far can
reach the udder fat deposits in sufficient
quantity to kill the dormant larvae.
According to Dr. Bradley, strongyloides is
very common mn Florida hogs, especially in
young pigs. Diarrhea is a symptom of
strongyloides infection in baby pigs. Progressive
dehydration follows, and death generally
occurs when the pigs are between 10 and 14
days old. Mortality may approach 75% in some
cases Perhaps even more important economically
is the high cost of feeding infected pigs that
, rvive, but are stunted and grow slowly.
o;rida and other southeastern states offer
r ongyloides its most favourable environment -
rmth and moisture. Poorly drained lots are
i ally suited for build-up of the parasite.
Bradley says pork producers can reduce the
idence of parasites and cut economic losses
Larvae are ingested by sow with food
and migrate to udder fat.
Free-living cycle complete with adults and larva \
develops in soHl
Pigs nurse end are infectedfo produce disease by
development of adult ormns.
Ova are pass in droppings and hatch larvae.
YOU IARE CHEATING YOURSELF UNLESS Youlr Coffee Trees
give high yields. You are not earning all you could.
And you are robbing your country of the opportunity to earnr
substantial sums in foreign exchange so much needed to pur-
chase machinery and other equipment necessary for our con-
tinued economic growth.
REMEMBER that Coffee is our only Agricultural Industry, which
has, over the past Eight Years, maintained a steady increase
in price to growers. And we can sell Ten Times the present
production at equally attractive prices.
So why are you sitting there cheating yourself and your country.
Do something about it for your own sake.
Get in touch with your local Coffee Officer or write for full
details of the New COFFFE EXPANSION PROGRAMME to:
COFFEE INDUSTRY BOARD
P.O. BOX 12, KINGSTON 15
helps you produce
more meat .. w~ith less feed
HOGS .. Tylan combats troubles, helps you grow thriftier hogs
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Protection against costly infections. It pays to stay with Tylan all
the way to market.
Disease fighter, PPLO controller, gain booster, feed saver-How
should Tylan be serving you?
EUI LILLY S.A. (PUERTO RICO BRANCH)
E1ANCO san Jaun Puerto me.
BROILERS .. Tylan is first choice in Chronic
Respiratory Disease control programs. It kills
PPLO (pleuropneumonia-like organisms), the
primary cause of CRD. Tylan helps you cut
mortality during the critical early growing
period, helps broilers gain faster and make more
efficient use of feed.
RE VIE WS
of the traditional methods seem to be restricted to
practices in the Far East. Reasons for the
various operations are also the traditional ones
given which may not necessarily stand critical
The section on weed-control is informative. Very good
mlustrations of some of the main weeds in paddy fields
are given and traditional scientific methods of control
are described. The information provided on the
use of herbicides would be useful to anyone
engaged in growing rice. Not enough attention has
been given to cultural methods of weed control -
particularly involving judicious water control.
The section on diseases is divided between fungal,
bacterial, viral and physiological. The best known of
the fungal diseases Blast is dealt with in greatest
detail and summarises most of the available information
on this disease. Each disease is dealt with under
headings symptoms, description of causal organism,
dissemination and predlisposing factors and control.
Varietal resistance, cultural technique and the use of
chemicals are discussed in the control of each disease.
In a manual of this type more emphasis should
be given to physiological diseases, which seem to be
increasing in importance especially in the old rice
,,s Manual No. 3 Pest control in Rice:
i istry of Overseas Development.
pp. Illustrated. Paperbound, $12.05
J manual has been prepared primarily for growers
Extension officers and deals with all aspects of
i';control including insects, diseases, weeds,
0 Is and rodents on rice.
I e introduction the world situation with rice is
< wisely but clearly stated and the fact is emphasised
in countries where rice is most needed as food
< he areas where yields are lowest. The under-
Sreasons for this which includes other factors
Varietal, photoperiodicity and duration of
>are mentioned. Further sections provide
incise botanical description of the rice plant and
sification of the various types. In the section
!gronomy, not enough attention was given
he mechanical cultivation of rice and descriptions
The emphasis given to nematodes as pests of rice is
well justified. As with the bacterial, fungal and viral
diseases, each nematode disease is dealt with under
the headings distribution, signs~of attack, life cycle and
Molluscs are important pests of rice in many parts of
the world and this is recognized in the manual.
The section on insects is divided between stem borers,
plant suckers, leaf feeders and stem and root feeders;
each pest is dealt with under similar headings as for
diseases. The manual also describes the damage done
by birds and rodents and suggests methods of control.
Storage pests which are so important are adequately
A manual on this topic has considerable merit at
the present time. It is concisely written with many
very fine illustrations. This reviewer feels that more
illustrations particularly of diseased or damaged
material would have been beneficial. The manual is
free from typographical and other mistakes although
in an attempt to conserve on space printed lines are
too close together for easy reading. The manual
would be most useful to all persons engaged in growing
rice and is a valuable contribution to the literature
on an important aspect of rice production.
Regular sailing by modern CARGO steam.
ers between Jamaica, New York and New
Orleans, Cristobal, Costa Rica, Colombia,
,utmalas Hn~do ah asdaSo tho ma ( i
with transhipment at Cristobel, C.Z. Re-
frigerated and chilled Cargo accepted
from New York and New Orleans for
For full inform.-tion apply to United
Fruit Jamaica Company, 40 Harbour
Street, Kingston, Jamaica, or, United
Fruit Company, Pier 3, North River,
New York, or, 321 St. Charles Avenue'
New Orleans 4, La., or Caribbean Steam-
ship Agency Limited, 421-427 Millbrook
Rd., Southampton S. 09 2 GF, England.
MG REMcCORMACK LINES, INc.
TROPICAL RADIO TELEGRAPH CO.
There are many thousands of acres on commercial
farms in the tropics which can be put into
goat pasture because nobody knows what else
to do with the land. The questions are whether
such land will support goats without the need
for expensive supplementary feed also how many
goats will an acre carry? Our authors have
dealt with the browsing habit of goats, they have
referred to comparisons between cow and goat mn
their ability to digest various types of vegetative
matter; at one point they say: "Despite... reports
on the goat's similarity to other livestock in
general digestive efficiency, there is considerable
evidence that it is exceptionally efficient at
chg~esting: crude fibre (cellulose)." This and other
mfobrmation in the same chapter will be encourag-
ing news to some farmers and may lead to a
system of tropical pasture management which will
include cattle and goats, together or in sequence.
The book is well worth its fifty shillng' price to
any farmer who has more than a couple of dozen
goats. And farmers who read the book should
realise as they go from page to page that the
authors have been forced to rely almost entirely
on the reports of scientist-writers because the
farmers who have kept goats in many countries
for countless years have been unable or unwilling
to write down what they have done, what they
have observed and what they have gained or lost.
The extent to which farmers do this sort of
record-keeping will in part decide how useful
research scientists such as Dr. Devendra and Dr.
Burns will be to the farming community.
The Editors of CARIBBEAN FARMING have
recently heard from the Secretary of the Indian
Trail Branch Cane Farmers' Association which is
affiliated to the Trinidad Island-Wide Cane
Farmers' Association, Inc. Members of this
branch of the Association are organizing a library
and would be very grateful to receive copies of
agricultural publications. Editors of agricultural
material, extension agents, suppliers of farm
equipment and ~other persons engaged in some
form of agricultural publicity may wish to send
Their address is:-
Indian Trail Branch Cane Farmers' Assoc.,
GOAT PRODUCTION IN THE TROPICS.
C. Devendra and Marca Burns.
Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux, 1970. 50s.
A publishers' note on the dust jacket of this book
includes this statement: "In the past, the goat has
been much mal e~nd for its destructiveness and
patronisingly re erred to as 'the poor man's cow'.
We believe that in preparing this monograph, Drs.
Devendra and Burns, who both have experience of
animal breeding research in the tropics, have
done much to clear the goat's bad reputation.
The authors are acutely aware of the great need in
the world today for proteins of animal origin. It
is in countries where this lack is most felt that
the goat thrives, subsisting as other livestock
cannot do on vegetation of no direct value for
In nearly two hundred pages, the writers have
re erred to the points of management, nutrition,
breeding and yields that would interest the
commercial farmer who keeps goats or is thinking
of goats as a possible undertaking. However, it
would be impossible for any writer to answer in
a book no bigger than this the questions that come
to the farmer's mind. Certainly, with all the
interesting information that these authors have
provided, it would not be possible for them to
do more than mention some of the problems of
goat farming and some of the answers to these
As it is, the book should be of tremendous interest
to any farmer who is not expecting it to be
a handbook of goat husbandry. For the greater
part, the authors have devoted their pages to
reviewing the literature on tropical goats; the
reference pages carry more than 360 items. There
are 48 illustrations most of them photographs
of goats of various types, shapes and sizes.
Livestock farmers will be interested to know that
in some breeds at least there is a relationship
between the polled characteristic and hermaphro-
ditism; indeed the chapter on reproductive perfor-
mance will make the farmer realise that there is
more to breeding goats than buying a good-
looking buck and putting him in a pen with a few
Pillsbury Feeds...for bigger, healthier, more productive animals on farms throughout Jamaica.
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Why not put Pillsbury Feeds to work in producing healthier, more profitable
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ALLIED INDUSTRIES (JAMAICA) LTD.
& DISTRIBUTED BY
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75 Vz Harbour St., Kingston.
**Fe ed .
7: xxx *t*
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With "Poyrarn-Combi you won't be troubled
For further information please contact:
Gerald S. W. Smith & Co. Ltd.
P. O. Box No. 14
T. D. Shillingford
P. O. Box No. 12
J. Q. Charles Ltd.
P. O. Box No. 279
T. Geddes Grant (Guyana) Ltd.
P. O. Box No. 407
Geo. F. Huggins & Co. Ltd.
P. O. Box No. 179
Port of Spain
Da Costa & Musson Ltd.
P. O. Box No. 103
Printed in Jamaica by Lithographic RilM