Socio-ecological context of Sumbawa buffalo depopulation: evidence from eastern Indonesia
Anwar Fachry1, Suhubdy Suhubdy2, Soekardono Soekardono3
1Faculty of Animal Science, University of Mataram, Laboratory of Livestock Socio-Economics, Indonesia
Sumbawa buffalo in Eastern Indonesia used to be called "Black Gold" by the island dwellers because of its great role and contribution in sustaining food security and socioeconomic livelihood. However, since past decade, this term has faded away. We conducted longitudinal studies in 2017 and 2021 aimed at identifying and explaining the trend, pattern, and determinants of Sumbawa buffalo declining population. The mixed-method was applied to investigate the effects of contextual factors and policy implementation beyond farmers’ household and farming attributes in 143 villages of Sumbawa district, West Nusa Tenggara Province. The multiple OLS Regressions and Factorial ANCOVA were used to analyse the correlates of contextual factors attributable to the declining population based on Animal Unit measure as outcome variable. At village level, the findings suggest that carrying capacity, land degradation, and socio-potential factors have affected the buffalo depopulation [B=-0.672*, B=0.413, B=-0.361* respectively). Further multiple classification analysis denotes emerging interactions at two and three determining variables. On the other hand, the qualitative measures employing Root Cause Analysis suggest that paradoxical cattle policy implementation in local governance and land degradation including deforestation were asserted to be the root causes and as core problems, operating through pathways of various social and agroecological undesired effects. Consequently, farmers who, faced with diminishing communal grassland area where to send buffalo for grazing, feel compelled to switch to another livestock farming. As policy and programmatic recommendation, unravelling the contextual determinants and enhanced policy formulation are absolutely needed to recover or avoid further declining productivity, otherwise Sumbawa Buffalo, as some key informants said, might soon become endangered animal.
Keywords: Depopulation, grassland, livestock rural development, ruminant, socio-ecological, Sumbawa buffalo
Contact Address: Anwar Fachry, Faculty of Animal Science, University of Mataram, Laboratory of Livestock Socio-Economics, Jalan majapahit no. 62, 83125 Mataram, Indonesia, e-mail: afachryunram.ac.id