Research Article
Volume 6 Issue 5 - 2020
Cattle Rustling and Sustainability of Nomadic Grazing in Nigeria: A Case Study of Taraba State, Nigeria
Ahmed YM1, Oruonye ED1* and Fatima AY2
1Department of Geography, Taraba State University, Jalingo, Nigeria
2Faculty of Agriculture, Taraba State University, Jalingo, Nigeria
*Corresponding Author: Oruonye ED, Department of Geography, Taraba State University, Jalingo, Nigeria.
Received: March 14, 2020; Published: April 16, 2020


Nomadic grazing has been one of the commonest forms of livestock rearing in Nigeria. This form of livestock management has thrived successfully over the years in the past and sustained many economic activities including local production of dairy products and meat, export in hides and skin, local leather works and tannery among others. However, nomadic grazing as a form of livestock management is increasingly threatened in recent times by a lot of challenges which include frequent clashes with crop farmers and its attendant loss of lives and properties and cattle rustling. This study appraises the challenges of cattle rustling on the sustainability of nomadic grazing in Nigeria using the case of Taraba State, Nigeria. Data used consist of both primary and secondary data. Primary data was generated from a field survey carried out in the State, particularly local communities that have been plagued by incidents of rural banditry and cattle rustling. This was complimented by extensive desk review on the topic. Interviews were conducted face to face basis using structured questionnaire. Data collected was analysed using descriptive statistics. The findings of the study reveals that about 1,758 cows were loss in the State to cattle rustling between 2012 to 2019 based on interaction with cattle herders and additional 1,462 cattle loss was reported to the Ministry of Agriculture Jalingo. Other reported incidence estimated that 64,750 cattles were stolen in 2013 and at least 2,991 herders killed in the North Central States of Nigeria. Findings of the study reveals that there is a general dearth of available statistical data that can be used to ascertain the extent of the menace of cattle rustling, the number of casualties among herders and number of cattle lost to cattle rustlers over the years. The study findings reveal that most of the cow theft cases took place in remote rural communities and forest with no security presence, poor transport and communication networks. Hence, many were never reported nor captured by media reports. Only a handful of cases were reported mostly to the Nigerian Police Force station and noted by the State Ministry of Agriculture. The study reveals that cattle rustling are main trigger in attacks by herders and crop farmers. Many nomads have been completely stripped of their cattle. Many affected heads of household’s have abandoned their families, leaving women and children behind to cater for themselves. The study concludes that cattle rustling are a great threat to pastoral nomadism in Nigeria. Based on the findings, the study recommends the establishment of ranching and strengthening of security operations in the State and country.

Keywords:Armed Banditry; Cattle Rustling; Nomadic Grazing; Sustainable Grazing


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Citation: Ahmed YM., et al. “Cattle Rustling and Sustainability of Nomadic Grazing in Nigeria: A Case Study of Taraba State, Nigeria”. EC Agriculture 6.5 (2020): 42-49.

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