Karthikeya Sivasenapathy and his mission to save the majestic, native Kangayam breed of cattle in Tamil Nadu

Article and Image Courtesy : The Hindu

Author : M. J. Prabu

Karthik Sivasenapathy with his prized bull

Karthik Sivasenapathy with his prized bull

Efforts to save endangered wild animals like the tiger, are afoot today by enacting stringent laws for protecting them.

“Even the house sparrow has attracted attention in bringing about a conservation movement. But sadly, for the livestock sector in Tamil Nadu not much attention is being paid to conserve its native cattle breeds,” says Mr.Karthikeya Sivasenapathy, Managing Trustee, Senaapathy Kangayam Cattle Research Foundation, Kuttapalayam, Erode.

The foundation is situated in Kuttapalayam village, Palayakottai in the Kangayam taluk of Tirupur District (formerly Erode District), Tamil Nadu, and is ideal for cattle breeding.
Origin

The Kangeyam breed derives it's name from Kangayam division of the taluk spreading from Erode, Karur, Namakkal and Dindigul districts where this breed has been in existence for a long time.

The animals are medium in build although a few large specimens can be found. Considered to be a good draught breed in South India, the breed is hardy and thrives on scanty rations, according to Mr. Karthik.

Many native animals have all become extinct in the last 20 years, thanks to the government policy of introducing cross bred animals and claiming that they can yield more milk than the native ones.

“Though to some extent it may be true that the cross bred yielded some litres more, the fact that these cross breeds also got afflicted with several infections and prone to a number of ailments that their humble native counterparts were not, cannot be overlooked,” he emphasises.

Reason for decline

“Another reason for the decline in their numbers is that the government has invested several crores for the Animal Husbandry department.

“But today we cannot find even one person in the department supporting the cause of maintaining the native breed. The answer is simple. The money cannot be used for the native breeds for maintaining them healthily as the animals are by nature robust.

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