MAHMOUD ABUSETTA AL-JALOUDY
Location The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is about 100 km from the south-eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea, between latitudes 29º - 33º N and longitudes 35º- 39º E. It borders Syria to the North, Iraq to the east, Saudi Arabia on both eastern and southern borders, and Palestine to the west (see Figure 1), and has a land area of about 89 200 km2, of which arable land is less than five percent. The population is 5 000 000 (the World Factbook 2006 est. was 5,906,760), with a high annual growth rate of 3.5 percent (World Factbook 2006 est. was 2.49%). About 30 percent of the population live in rural areas and roughly 45 percent are below 15 years of age.
Figure 1. Map of Jordan
Land Area, Arable and Pastoral Areas The actual cultivated area in 1997 totalled around 290 000 ha, of which 130 000 ha are planted with olives and fruit trees, 50 000 with vegetables and 110 000 with field crops. The fallow area was estimated at 90 000 ha. According to the Ministry of Agriculture survey, the number of farm holdings in 1997 was around 91,500, at an average area of 4.15 ha each, versus 57,438 holdings in 1983, at an average of 6.43 ha each.
About 90 percent, or 80,771 km2, of the Kingdom is grazing land; 69,077 km2 of which receive under 100 mm of rainfall, and 1 000 km2 of marginal grazing with 100-200 mm annual rainfall. Natural and man-made forests cover 760 km2, out of 1,300 km2 registered as forests. There are also about 500 km2 of state-owned land used for grazing in mountainous areas.
The ruminant sector. Livestock is a major component of the agricultural sector. According to 1999 statistics, it comprised 2,200,000 head of sheep and goats and 64,700 head of cattle. Table 1 indicates the evolution of livestock numbers.
Table 1. Livestock numbers in Jordan (, 000 head)
*2004 and 2005 data FAOSTAT (2006)
In 1994 local production of red meat was 15,800 tons; it increased to 16,000 tons in 1996, then declined to 15,200 tons in 1997 only to rise in the succeeding year to 22,000 tons (Table 2). This was accompanied by a decline in meat imports, which were 33,100 tons in 1994, and declined to 23,700 tons in 1998. The Kingdom has improved its self-sufficiency in red meat. In 1994, it was 32.3 percent, but rose to 37.6 in 1996 and to 48.2 percent in 1998. The improvement was mainly due to drought, which caused a rise in number of animals slaughtered.
Table 2. Production, Imports and Self-sufficiency of Red Meat (, 000 tons)
Farming Systems The total arable land (in 1997) was only 400 000 ha, less than a tenth of a ha per capita. This is accompanied by scarcity of renewable fresh water resources, which do not exceed 750 million cubic metres per year, an average of 170 m3 per capita for all uses. Around 80 percent of the cultivated area is rainfed.
The agricultural sector is characterized by unstable production; it depends on rain and its distribution over the cultivation season, which directly affects production of the rainfed lands, pasture, livestock and irrigated crops because of its impact on the dams, groundwater and water sources storage. In spite of the sectors low contribution to the GDP, it is still - in its economical and social dimensions- a fundamental sector of the national economy. It is the base for integrated rural development, a source of income and employment for rural and Badia (semi-desert) people and a generator of activities in the other economical sub-sectors, especially the industrial and services ones. It also plays a central role in food security and trade balance improvement.
Agriculture is the main income source of about 15 percent of the population and employs around 62,000 (6 percent of the workforce). Women constitute 6.6 percent of the sectors labour force and about 4 percent of the working women in all sectors. The agricultural sector contributed 13.7 percent of all exports (average 1991-95) and 15.4 percent in 1996.
Despite the increasing production and the constant increase of the net absolute value of agricultural production during 1993-97 from 193 300 000 Jordanian Dinars (JD 1.42 US$) at 1993 prices to 254 300 000 JD in 1997- its share in the GDP decreased from 6 percent in 1993 to 5.5 percent in 1997 prices and from 7.7 percent to 6.1 percent in fixed, 1985, prices as shown in Table 3:
Table 3. Domestic Product (in million JD)
If agriculture-related activities are included, then the share in GDP would increase to 28 percent. Jordans dependency on agricultural imports increased with an aggravated deficit of the agricultural commodity balance (rose from 342 000 000 JD in 1993 to 543 000 JD in 1996 or about 120 JD per capita). The deficit was concentrated in basic commodities, mainly wheat and pulses at 149 000 000 JD, feed at 209 000 000 JD and red meat at 40 000 000 JD.
2.1 Major Topographic Features. There are four main physiographic regions (see Figure 2):
Jordan Rift Valley and Wadi Araba. The rift valley extends from Lake Tiberias in the north to the Gulf of Aqaba in the south. It is the Jordanian part of a continental shelf extending from Aqaba in the South to the Adasiyyah in the North. This zone is divided into three areas:
The Jordan Valley and the Southern Ghor are among the most important agricultural areas, as there is a permanent source of water from the Yarmouk River and side dams for the former, and from surface water for the latter. Due to their position below sea level and high temperatures (microclimate), these two are the most important winter vegetable producing areas. Cultivable lands in Ghors total approximately 34 000 ha, all irrigated. The majority of holdings are between 3-4 ha. Farmers use modern agricultural techniques in irrigation, production and marketing.
The Highlands. These extend from the Yarmouk River in the north passing through the Ajloun mountains, the hills of Ammon and Moab, and the Edom mountains. Many creeks and wadis drain from the east to the Jordan River, Dead Sea, and Wadi Araba. The average altitude ranges from 600 m in the north to 1,000 m in the middle and 1,500 m in the south. The highlands, which are a succession of catchment and sub-catchments, comprise: a semi-arid zone (350-500 mm annual rainfall) and a small sub-humid zone (over 500 mm annual rainfall).
The Arid Zone (Plains). This comprises the plains between the Badia (semi desert) and the Highlands. Rainfall ranges between 200 mm in the East and 350 mm in the West. More than 50 percent of the arable land is in this zone, the rainfed crops are mainly barley (areas of 200-300 mm of rainfall) wheat and fruit trees (where rainfall ranges between 300 and 350 mm).
Badia (Eastern Desert). This covers about 8 090 000 ha or 90 percent of the Kingdom. It is characterized by a very sparse vegetation cover and an annual rainfall of less than 200 mm. In the past it was only used for grazing. In the last two decades, however, 20 000 ha have been irrigated, using underground water, to grow vegetables (especially tomatoes, watermelon and potatoes), plus fruit trees and cereals, especially wheat.
Figure 2. Physiographic Regions
Source: GCEP: Jordan Country Study on Biological Diversity, 1998.
2.2 Major Soil Types (see Al-Qudah, 2000)
The soils of the Rift Valley in Zor, Wadi Araba and parts of Ghor belong to the order entisols and enceptisols (ustochrepts). The other parts of the rift are covered by aridisols. In the north of the Valley, the soils are deep and of moderate to medium structure. These soils have good water holding capacity and are relatively fertile.
The soils of the Highlands are non-cracking soils (xerochrepts), cracking clayey soils (vertisols) and shallow loamy soils (xerothents). The soils are generally calcareous with fair nutrient level but suffer from nitrogen and phosphorous deficiency and occasionally iron and manganese deficiency. Their organic content is less than one percent. The texture is heavy loam to clayey with high water holding capacity.
The soils of the Steppe region are aridisols and entisols. They are deep to moderately deep, slightly gravely, with fine silty loam texture in the surface and subsoil horizons. The subsoil horizons are rich in CaCO3 (calciorthids). The surface layer is dark, yellowish brown to brown. The high silt content of the surface soil and the absence of suitable organic content are responsible for the poor infiltration rate that leads to higher run-off and decreases the water storage capacity of the soil profile. Consequently, the vegetative growth is retarded and further soil degradation occurs. In general the soils of this region suffer from deficiencies of nitrogen and phosphorous. These soils are highly susceptible to gully and wind erosion particularly when disturbed by ploughing or subjected to over grazing.
The soils of the Desert region are aridisols and entisols. Soil depth varies considerably from one place to another. In the basalt area in the north, the deep clayey, well structured, soils occur below the moderately weathered basalt pavement (camborthids). Recent soils are saline, rather silty due to the effect of wind sediments or are like the soils which occupy the mudflats. Older soils are clayey, deep, and contain higher amounts of CaCO3. In the middle of Badia and to the south of Azraq, the soils become saline and contain gypsum (gypsiorthids). In the south around Disi and Mudawwara, the weathered sandstone shale and granite have resulted in the formation of sandy soils. The soils are in general low in organic matter, sandy to sandy loam in texture, often highly saline or alkaline and are generally devoid of vegetation. Their water holding capacity and fertility status is very low.
3.1 Climate: Jordan is on the eastern margins of the Mediterranean climatic zone of the eastern Mediterranean. This climate is characterized by hot, dry summers and cool, wet winters. More than 90 percent of the country receives less than 200 mm annual precipitation (see Table 4 and Figure 3).
Table 4. Rainfall distribution in Jordan
There is a maximum annual rainfall of 600 mm in the north-west corner of the country (see Figure 3). Average temperatures show a reverse pattern; they increase rapidly from the dissected plateaus to the very low level graben, increase gradually from the dissected plateau to the eastern margins of the eastern desert, and decrease gradually from north to south in line with increasing altitude. The highest annual and monthly values for evapotranspiration are in the desert with an annual total of 2,427 mm for Maan and 2,325 mm for Rweishid in the northeast. In the highlands, values vary from 1,485 mm at Rabba to 1,343 mm at Shoubak:
Figure 3. Rainfall distribution
Highest monthly values occur in July and the lowest monthly values occur in January for all the country.
3.2 Bioclimate: There are four bioclimatic subdivisions in Jordan (Long, 1957) see Figure 4:
Figure 4. Bioclimatic regions of Jordan
3.3 Agro-ecological Zones
Four agro-ecological zones can be delineated as shown in Table 5.
Table 5. Agro-ecological Zones in Jordan
3.4 Major Agricultural Enterprises in Each Zone:
Land uses by agro-ecological zone are summarized in Table 6.
Table 6. Land uses according to agro-ecological zones.
4.1 Scale of Enterprises. There are estimated to be 2 200 000 head of sheep and goats in Jordan (although Al-Qudah and Sabet (2000) suggest 2.6 M and according to FAOSTAT it was 2,030,210 in 2004 and 2,115,985 in 2005). Nomadic grazing has declined to less than 10 percent of the sheep and goats, which belong to less than 5 percent of herders. Meanwhile, the ratio of semi-settled herds has increased to more than 70 percent of all sheep and goats. The remaining small ruminants (about 20 percent) follow a system that is mixed with agriculture, especially in the west of the Kingdom.
Herd composition varies according to several factors, the most important of which is the area and productivity of the grazing and the availability of fodder. Herd size varies according to geographical zone. Herd size in the Badia and the marginal areas is larger than in the western regions. Studies have given differing figures for herd size.
4.2 Small Ruminant Production Systems. Small ruminant production systems developed gradually in the middle of the past century as a result of the following changes:
Sheep: the pillar of the national livestock industry, represent about 65.6 percent of the animal units. They contribute 62 percent of red meat and 28 percent of locally produced milk. The main breed is Awassi a tough wool, large tailed, triple- purpose (milk, meat and wool) sheep. They are medium sized, a male weighs 60-90 kg and a female 40-55 kg. They reach reproductive maturity young (9- 12 months for females). Mating is in July-August, and lambing in December-February. Under good nutritional conditions Awassis are good milkers.
Goats: are second in quantitative and economic importance. They contribute about 23 percent of local red meat and 6 percent of fresh milk. Local (Baladi) and Shami breeds are kept. Baladi goats are the majority. They are medium- sized, rough and with medium length hair. An adult female weighs about 35 kg and adult males reache 40 kg. Baladi goats are concentrated in the mountainous areas in the northern, western and eastern regions.
Shami Goats: There are about 35 000 Shami goats, about 3 percent of the total (1993). They are medium sized, brown, good milkers with a high twinning rate. The average weight of the adult female is 45 kg and the male 50- 55 kg. Under good nutritional conditions Shami goats reach reproductive maturity at an early age; and mating takes place during June- September.
An International Fund for Agricultural Development study in 1995 (IFAD, 1995), which encompassed 664 samples of sheep and goat breeders (owners of more than 50 head), showed that:
4.3 Sheep Production Systems. Sheep production systems vary from one location to another according to the availability of grazing, the breeders financial capability and his technical knowledge. The production systems prevailing in the Kingdom are:
4.4 Feeding systems
In the past, local livestock depended totally on natural grazing. Their number did not exceed 500 000 head, pasture productivity was much more (at least twice) than at present and the area available was much more than it is now.
Existing statistics indicate that there are 2 200 000 small ruminants, which depend for half their food requirements on imported feed. Natural grazing supplies only 25- 30 percent of their requirements, as its productivity has declined to half of its potential and the area has decreased. In the past, the availability of fodder and water, and the search for them, were the limiting factors for movement of herds. Nowadays food and water are transported to herds wherever they are, and it is possible to quickly transport the herds themselves.
The major limitations of the sector can be grouped as follows:
4.6 Socio-economic Limitations
Natural grazing land can be classified into three ecological zones:
Desert (Badia): The approximate area of these lands is 7 000 000 ha, which are concentrated in the area that receives less than 100 mm/year rainfall, which falls off towards the east and the south till it reaches 50 mm/year or even less. Most of these are state lands. Rainfall fluctuates from one year to another, in addition to bad distribution throughout the season; it comes as short thundershowers; and some places receive no rain at all for several successive years. Rain is the limiting factor for plant growth. Much of this area is covered with chert and an underlying thin layer of fine textured soil. Artemisia herba- alba, Retama raetam, Achillea fragrantissima and Poa bulbosa are common in the wadi beds, while the unpalatable Anabasis is present in most locations (see Table 7). Despite its deterioration (see Al-Qudah and Sabet, 2000), this region is the main grazing land of Jordan. The average annual dry matter production is 40 kg / ha in normal years (see Table 8); this can rise to 150 kg/ha in protected areas and range reserves.
Table 7. Palatability of desert plants
There are some Bedouin communities in this region who live by livestock raising. The area suffers from a declining carrying capacity due to overgrazing and water and wind erosion. To develop this region, it is necessary to protect it to allow regeneration of the vegetation cover, reduce the stocking rate and specify the grazing season.
Table 8. Vegetation Production of Rangelands
Steppe (Marginal) grazing: The area is estimated at about 1 000 000 ha of which 90 percent is in private ownership. The average area of a holding is 23.6 ha in the northern Badia, 19.8 ha in the middle Badia and 9.1 ha in the southern Badia. The remaining 10 percent is state-owned. It receives 100- 200 mm annual rainfall. According to its vegetation the steppe is divided into two regions:
Grazing vegetation of this area mainly consists of:
Mountain grazing The area of this zone is about 45 000 ha. It receives an annual rainfall of more than 200 mm. It is composed of small plots scattered around villages and between orchards, cropland and forests.
Grazing vegetation of this area mainly consists of:
5.2 Status of rangeland tenure (Public versus Private)
For a long period in the past, Jordans grazing lands were characterized by effective traditional land tenure systems and grazing rights which were associated with tribal institutions. This protected the resources in these lands and organized their use in a way that assisted in their conservation and continued productivity under the prevailing environmental and social conditions. With the elimination of these systems and rights and declaration of grazing lands as state-owned land, open for everybody, new land uses encroached. Many of these areas were over-used without consideration to their resource requirements or their productivity. The above change in land tenure, also led to a lack of the incentives that encourage pastoralists and Bedouins to maintain and conserve their resources and lands and control their grazing. Therefore, the identification and definition of the ownership of these lands would greatly assist in setting plans for their development and improvement. According to the Agriculture Law No. (20) of 1973, all natural grazing lands are owned by the state; but in practice and reality, the case is the opposite. The area of these lands is about 8 000 000 ha, or 90 percent of the Kingdoms total area.
The number of livestock is totally out of balance with the available grazing, which has suffered serious mismanagement. The impact of overgrazing on the vegetation is evident from the excessive uprooting of the green matter (grass and bushes), leading to reduced seeding, reduced regeneration, and the consequent loss of plant production in the next year. Also, there is a change in the floristic composition, a decline in volume and frequency of plants. Despite the increasing numbers of the animals, the poor herders incomes and prosperity are declining. The causes include lack of sown fodder, decline in traditional management, extending the lambing season to unsuitable months and dependence on complementary feeds.
5.3 Settled communities in the grazing lands
There were no settled communities in the grazing areas until the middle of the twentieth century. Nomadic groups lived in wool tents and used to move according to the availability of forage and water. This included the eastward (Al-tashreeq) and westward (Al-taghreeb) trips to the eastern grazing regions in winter and spring, and return to western farming and mountainous regions to graze on grass and crop by-products in the summer and autumn.
Pastoral communities began to plough marginal land at the borders of the Badia to grow cereals in order to confirm property rights, when the survey and registration of lands started in the forties. Settlement of people and building started soon afterwards. Land survey and property registration were resumed in the eighties. Most of the marginal grazing and some deep-desert lands were registered. Estimates indicate that at least 1 500 000 hectares (or 15-20 percent of the traditional grazing land) where the vegetation cover was damaged, were registered to pastoralists.
Stability and urban expansion accelerated on the marginal lands near the main cities from Maan to Mafraq and eastwards along the Syrian border. Large settlements grew deep in the Badia such as Safawi, Rowaishid, Reesheh etc. Government agencies came to provide these communities with services, including education, health, water, electricity, communications etc.
The main feature of this change is demographic. Communities tend to change from nomadic Bedouin to settled ones which are eager to urbanize and reduce dependency on grazing and livestock. They have become increasingly dependent on alternate income sources, such as employment in government institutions.
Statistics indicate that the population of the Badia is around 185 000 who live in 170 communities. There are 25 594 households, 12 242 (or 48 percent) of which own livestock. The prevailing grazing system in the Badia is semi-fixed nomadic grazing. Only 2 percent of livestock raisers are full-time nomads, the rest are semi-nomadic and live in houses, although their stocks move according to the availability of forage. Usually flocks are transported in trucks, as are water and feed.
Socially, the tribe played a distinguished role in pastoral communities as settlement takes place on a tribal basis. The tribe is the basis for distribution of lands according to tribal frontage.
5.4 Fodder crops
Feed crop resources in Jordan are: natural grazing resources; natural vegetation in rainfed arable areas; tibn, straw, and stubble; by-products of vegetables in the irrigated areas; sown forage production in the rainfed areas and irrigated areas; cereal grain and wheat-bran.
Estimates of fodder production vary according to the researcher. According to Harb and Karabelliah (1990) quoted by FAO (1994), feed production was 252 000 000 Fodder Units (FUs - equivalent to one kilogramme of barley) or 597,071 tons. Neshewat (1990) quoted by FAO (1994) estimated the production as 765,634 tons. According to Gaddes et al. (1991), the annual fodder production is 262 000 000 SFU, which covers about 30 percent of local livestock requirements. Table 9 shows Jordanian feed resources according to Nabulsi et al.(1992).
Straw and stubble are an important feed source. These include cereal stubble, straw and grains left in the field, straw or standing hay of lentils, chickpeas, broad beans, vetch and other leguminous crops. Failed barley (due to lack of rainfall in dry years) is used as green fodder.
Fallows are also an important source of fodder. Fodder production on such lands has been encouraged through many programmes and projects using sown forages in agricultural rotations in the rainfed areas. Research results using several species of Vicia, Lathyrus and Medicago proved that the most promising for the higher potential parts of the country appear to be Vicia sativa, Medicago sativa and M. rotata. The use of a seed mixture of three parts of legume to one of cereal appeared to optimize production.
Barley is the main fodder grown in rainfed land since it is well suited to dry areas. It can be used as green hay, and can be harvested and collected as grain and straw, or is grazed stubble (according to the rainfall amounts). The areas planted to barley show great variation according to the annual precipitation. Yields range between 250 800 kg/ha.
Water is a serious limiting factor hindering cultivation of irrigated forage. In high potential areas, the use of scarce water for cash crops give a better return than forage production. At present, substantial amounts of lucerne hay are imported. Under rainfed conditions, in areas of more than 300 mm rainfall, forage crops can be grown in association with cereals, in rotation with cereals, or replacing the fallow year between cereal crops with a forage legume. Vegetable residues, by-products, grasses and weeds are fed to livestock in irrigated areas. The amount of feed so produced is roughly estimated at 30 000 tons.
Wheat by-products, wheat bran and barley are a very important source of feed. Wheat bran and barley are the most important. The annual production from wheat bran (from both imported and locally grown grain) is around 140 000 tons.
Table 9. Total feed production in Jordan
5.5 Feed balance
The total feed units (FU) required by the animal sector was estimated to be 1,200-1,300 million in 1999. However, local production for the same year covered only 25-30 percent of requirements. Table 10 shows the imported feeds during the period 1992-1999, and Table 11 shows the locally produced feed for the same period. Table 12 shows the feed requirements of the major animal sectors in 1999.
Table 10. Imported feeds during the period 1992-1999 (, 000 tons)
*mostly used for poultry feeding
Table 11. Locally produced feeds during the period 1992-1999 (, 000 tons)
Table 12. Feed requirements of major animal sectors for 1999
5.6 Forage Seed Production
The Ministry of Agriculture, through the Seed Centre in the Directorate of Forests, and under the technical direction of the Directorate of Range, has an annual programme for collecting forage shrub seeds for reseeding or production of seedlings. The most collected species are:
Atriplex halimus, A. leucoclada, A. nummularia, Salsola vermiculata, Acacia saligna, A. arabica, A. farnesiana, Prosopis julifora, P. tamarugo, Colutea, Ceratonia siliqua, Ziziphus spina-christii which are, thereafter raised in nurseries and planted out. Atriplex leucoclada, A. halimus and Salsola vermiculata are used for direct reseeding of grazing land.
In the hope of encouraging fodder production in rainfed areas in a frame of integrated livestock and cereal production, some programmes worked on introduction of forage legumes into farming systems. Seed multiplication of Medicago rotata, M. sativa, M. scutellata, M. rigidula, Vicia sativa and other forages was subject to research, trials and demonstrations.
A plant genetics unit, established in 1995 in the National Centre for Agricultural Research and Technology Transfer (NCARTT), and ICARDA has collected at 113 sites throughout the country to explore indigenous pasture and forage with potential to improve livestock feed. Seeds collected for research, or to be stored, included: Salsola, Acacia, Ephedra, Tamarix, Aegilops, Astragalus, Bromus, Colutea istria, Dactylis, Hordeum, Lathyrus, Lolium, Medicago, Onobrychis, Phalaris, Poa, Trifolium, Trigonella, Triticum and Vicia.
Jordans grazing lands have suffered continuous deterioration due to elimination of their vegetative cover as a result to the following factors:
The direct result of these practices is deterioration of the vegetative cover and opening the door wide for aeolian erosion of the soil. The consequences of such activities were loss of productivity and accelerated desertification.
Al-Qudah and Sabet (2000) summarize various institutional, legal, technical, infrastructural, economic and marketing constraints to rangeland development and factors in their depletion.
The improvement of Jordans grazing lands depends on the improvement and rationalization of their management. All other interventions are secondary.
6.1 Rangeland Rehabilitation. Several institutions are involved in grazing management and rehabilitation. The Ministry of Agriculture is in overall change. Early on, the Ministry of Agriculture started range development projects. It established 29 reserves totalling 84 400 ha in all regions; work in these reserves was confined to protection, water harvesting, re-planting/re-seeding and grazing control. The Ministry also carried out projects for the development of specific areas. Among those was the Hamad Basin Development project which aimed at comprehensive socio-economic development of the target area. Among the programmes dealt with by this project are: underground and surface water development for livestock, animal production and health, range development and management, and socio- cultural development(schools, health centres etc.).
It is acknowledged that lack of involvement of local pastoral communities is a serious obstacle hindering land management; the Ministry of Agriculture has realized the importance of participation of beneficiaries in management issues. Participation of stake holders and beneficiaries is a major concern of the newly proposed national rangeland strategy, and MOA is now implementing the national rangeland rehabilitation programme which is using participatory methodology in planning and executing range development and management. The range directorate, with modest finance from international donors, implements participatory small range-related micro projects aiming at encouraging private rangeland development, water harvesting, lamb fattening, fodder production, intensive raising, dairy manufacture, and small income generation enterprises. The Jordan Cooperative Organization, with assistance provided through the World Food Programme (WFP), is since 1981, implementing a programme in which range cooperative members plant fodder shrubs and improve grazing in communal lands allocated to those cooperatives by the Ministry of Agriculture.
6.2 Integration of Livestock into Farming Systems
This is taking place in high rainfall areas (semi-arid and semi-humid agro- climatic zones) producing cereals and legumes for human and animal consumption. Small ruminants remain near communities or cultivated areas most of the year. The feed resources that are usually available to animals are barley grain, vetches, stubble, wheat bran, crop residues, agro-industrial by-products (olive cake, tomato pomace). Olive prunings and residues of vegetables in irrigated areas and residues of summer vegetables in rainfed areas play a considerable role during late summer and autumn in feeding animals. Grazing land provides 0- 20 percent of fodder needs, depending on the proximity of mountain grazing. This agropastoral system represents 25 percent of national sheep and goats (Abu Zanat, 1995). Goats predominate in areas with hard topography or rich in woody plants. The two major constraints to this system are urbanization and land fragmentation.
7.1 Key Institutions
The Ministry of Agriculture:
Through its Rangeland, Animal Production, Animal Health, and other Directorates, the MOA carries out the following tasks in relation to Rangelands and Livestock:
National Centre for Agricultural Research and Technology Transfer (NCARTT):
Planning and conducting research activities in relation to range, fodder, livestock and other agricultural sectors.
The Cooperative Corporation:
Planning and supervision of range development and management by the range cooperatives reserves.
The Higher Council for Science and Technology/ Badia Research and Development Programme:
Conducting environmental and socio-economic studies in Safawi region.
Carrying out studies and research concerning ranges, and teaching and training in the subject.
Land and Survey Department:
Management of all issues related to property ant land tenure issues.
The Royal Jordanian Geographical Centre:
Preparation of maps, aerial photographs and images.
Environment Protection Corporation:
Coordination of environment related issues.
Jordan Water Authority:
Management of water resources
There are different NGOs dealing with the technical, environmental, and social aspects related to Rangeland and Livestock related issues. These include:
7.2 Research Priorities
The National Centre for Agricultural Research and Technology Transfer (NCARTT) is the government institution responsible for planning and coordination of implementation of agricultural research activities. Universities and some other institutions and projects are also doing research activities. The national agricultural research strategy, programmes and activities are shown in Table 13. NCARTTs main objectives for the Low Rainfall Areas Research Programme are:
Research priorities for rangeland include:
The integrated livestock programme of NCARTT aims to improving animal production, especially of sheep and goats through the following research activities:
Through its rainfed and irrigated agriculture research programmes, NCARTT aims to promote integrated farming systems and to improve quantitative and qualitative feed production.
For University of Jordan (UOJ), the objectives of rangeland research are:
Table 13. NCARTTs research programmes and distribution of activities
7.3 Contact persons
Ministry of Agriculture:
Pastoral Resources Information Monitoring and Evaluation Unit (PRIME)
Animal Production Directorate
Faculty of Agriculture of the University of Jordan
National Centre for Agricultural Research and Technology Transfer
Webpage of Interest:
Abu-Zanat, M. (1995): Production systems of small ruminants within the different agro-ecological zones of Jordan. Working paper submitted to livestock research priorities workshop, Amman, 9-10/11/1995.
Abu-Zanat, M. (1997): Livestock Research Priorities in Jordan. Working paper submitted to the workshop on consultation on setting livestock research priorities in West Asia and North Africa, Aleppo, 12-16/11/1997.
ACSAD, (1997): The Study of Feed Resources in the H.K of Jordan, Damascus. 1997.
Al-Qudah, B.(1998): Development of the Natural Rangelands in Jordan. Working paper submitted to Range Development and Desertification Control Workshop organized by ACSAD in Amman 27/6-2/7/1998.
Al-Qudah, B.(2000): Soils of Jordan. Draft Report, unpublished.
Al-Qudah, B. and J. Sabet (2000): Rangeland management, water harvesting and users´involvement with rangeland and conservation reserves in Jordan. In: Dryland Pasture, Forage and Range Network News. Issue No.19, July 2000, 13-17.
AOAD: (1979) (Study for development of rangelands in southern Jordan).(Arabic).
Department of Statistics: Annual Statistical Bulletins
Duwayri, M. & Syouf, M. (1995) Crop Genetic Resources of Jordan. Technical Report. Unpublished.
FAO (1994): Sheep Production Under Extensive Systems in the near East- Jordan Pastoral System- A Case Study. FAORNE.
Fsheikat, M. (1999): Cost of Rangeland Seedling Production and Installation in Jordan. Unpublished manuscript.
Gaddes, N.E., Abadi, A., Abadi, S., Al Azraie, J. and Muhairet, M. (1991): Summary of the Rangeland situation and proposals for its development. 2nd draft report for Forestry and Range Development Project JOR/87/007.
GCEP, UNDP & GEF: (1998): Jordan Country Study on Biological Diversity. Prepared under project No. GF/6105-92-65 and GF/6105-92-02 (2991).
Hunting Technical Services (1956): Report on the Rang Classification Survey of Jordan.
ICARDA, MOA, GTZ (1996): Workshop on Rangeland Research & Development in Jordan. Workshop documentation. Workshop dates 7-9/5/1996.
IFAD, (1993): The National Programme for Rangeland Resources Rehabilitation and Development (NPRRD). IFAD Report.
IFAD (1995) Environment Assessment for the Identification of a Pastoral Resource Assessment and Monitoring Component for the NPRRD. IFAD Report.
IFAD (1997) , National Programme For Rangeland Rehabilitation and Development- Phase I. Appraisal report, Volume I & II. IFAD Report No. 0742-July.
Kasapligil, B. (1956): An ecological survey of the vegetation in relation to forestry and grazing, Report no. 549, FAO.
Long, G. (1957): Bioclimatology and Vegetation of Eastern Jordan. Working paper for FAO, FAO/57/2/1109.
MOA (1990-1999): Computer Directorate Annual Reports.
MOA,(1990-1999): Animal Production Directorate Annual Reports.
MOA(2000): The National Rangeland Strategy- Draft Report.
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This profile was prepared by Mahmoud Abu Settah Al-Jaloudy in Amman in
The profile was edited by J.M. Suttie and S.G. Reynolds and slightly modified by S.G. Reynolds in May 2006.