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Livestock densities

Observed livestock densities


FAO’s Animal Production and Health Division is continuously collating sub-national livestock statistics for the globe. Data are matched to their corresponding administrative boundaries and then converted into density maps. Because of the different availability of agricultural surveys among countries, reference dates vary. The "observed" livestock densities for cattle, buffaloes, sheep, goats, pigs and poultry/chickens represent the most recently available data on livestock occurrence and are collected at the highest spatial resolution possible, which also varies from country to country.


Species data used for
GLW modelling
Cattle photo icon
Buffaloes photo icon
Goats photo icon
Sheep photo icon
Pigs photo icon
Poultry photo icon

Predicted livestock densities

The observed livestock statistics, at whatever administrative level they are available, are used to model the distribution of livestock using statistical relationships with various environmental variables. The animal densities are calculated, accounting for the amount of land suitable for livestock production, excluding them, for example, from lakes, cities and some protected areas. Since the observed livestock statistics come from different years in the different countries, three different products are currently distributed for each species:

  • Predicted (adjusted to match subnational totals from the observed data)
  • Predicted-2000 (adjusted to match FAOSTAT 2000 national totals)
  • Predicted-2005 (adjusted to match FAOSTAT 2005 national totals)

Data can be downloaded as GIS files through the FAO's GeoNetwork data repository or displayed in the Google Earth application.

Species Image GIS Google Earth*
Cattle photo icon web icon google earth icon
Buffaloes photo icon web icon google earth icon
Goats photo icon web icon google earth icon
Sheep photo icon web icon google earth icon
Pigs photo icon web icon google earth icon
Poultry photo icon web icon google earth icon