Animal watering points termed beneficial for desert herders

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Animal watering points termed beneficial for desert herders

Animal watering points termed beneficial for desert herders

Fast Rural Development Program (FRDP) has installed 542 water facilities in desert villages for the domestic need of communities as well as facilitated their animals in Tharparkar district.

Water is a main problem for the Thar communities as traditional wells in many areas have become contaminated and people seem reluctant to use its water.

After building these water facilities, the villagers seem optimistic to have easy access to water facilities for their families as well as for their livestock.

These herders take their animals at the facilities to quench thirst twice or thrice daily. Previously they used to take the same herds to traditional wells, staying for long time to get their turn and use donkey for pulling the bucket with rope.

Compared to that these watering points seem nearer and accessible to their homes and makeshift cattle farms.

The recent rain showers in Thar desert on June 19, 2021 have created a hope for farmers, both for agriculture crops cultivation and rehabilitation of natural grazing fields.

Majority of rural population of Tharparkar district depends on livestock rearing, who consider rains as bringing prosperity for having more grass fodder for animals and food for humans.

Farmers attach the hope to have at least two more showers to cultivate pearl millet, apple gourd (tinda), melon and watermelon instantly as the desert communities believe that the rains in June always bring prosperity for them to cultivate these food and cash crops for earning income and having food stock for whole the year.

These desert families sometimes face hardships due to delaying rainfalls, which cause dryness and droughts. Though it is not heavy rain to fill the traditional water ponds, the people seem optimistic to see greenery all around sooner or later.

Because agriculture, the rain showers also benefit local trees and vegetation, which turn pleasant for tourists to enjoy the weather.

For the Thar herders, animals are traditional assets for their survival. Whenever the herder families feel economic stress and need money they always sell small animals to fulfill the need instantly and take care of other animals.

That is why they call the animals a bank, which benefit them to avoid any financial crisis at any time.

The desert families have traditional sources of storing rainwater, locally called tankas, which are safe for a few months. After sometimes the people start facing problems to fetch water from wells through donkeys and camels, travelling long distance daily.

Mostly desert families keep cows, sheep, goats, camels and donkeys. They keep camels and donkeys for multi purposes, ranging from ploughing lands for crops cultivation, carrying grass fodder, agriculture product and pulling long rope from wells to get water for domestic purposes.

Only in some areas, families also keep buffaloes with other animals for milk to maintain health of their children.

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