Naming Ceremony of New Born Calf to Promote the Breed of Desi Kasaragod Gidda Cow

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Not Just Naming Ceremony of New Born Baby, We have Naming Ceremony of Baby Calf which was held to promote the breed of desi Kasaragod Gidda Cow

Mangaluru: Even though I have been to quite a few naming ceremonies of newborn babies, this was a totally new experience where I witnessed the naming ceremony of a Baby calf, which was held to promote the breed of Desi Kasargod Gidda Cow. S Pradeep Kumar Kalkura, former president of the district Kannada Sahitya Parishat. and also at the helm of a cultural foundation in Mangaluru held a naming ceremony of a calf to promote Kasaragod Gidda, the Kasaragod dwarf cattle, breed that gives mineral-rich milk.

The Mangaluru based Kalkura Prathishtana organised the Nama Karana or naming ceremony for a newborn of a desi breed cow. Devaki, a Kasaragod Gidda cow, gave birth to her second calf recently in the home of Prathishtana president S Pradeep Kumar Kalkura, former president of the district Kannada Sahitya Parishat. The campaign was held under the aegis of the Prathishtana at Vadiraja Mantapa in Kadri Kambala, Mangaluru.

Speaking to Team Mangalorean, Prathishtana president S Pradeep Kumar Kalkura said, “The naming ceremony is aimed at the promotion of desi breeds of cows, especially the Kasaragod Gidda. I started rearing the desi breed cow during the pandemic. The five-year-old Devaki, who was brought from Manjeshwar, has given birth to a male calf and we named him Krishna. On Monday, a second calf will be named Subhadra and her pet name will be ‘Subbi. Kasaragod Gidda is mostly found in the Kasaragod district of Kerala”, added Pradeep.

The programme began with a Yakshagana song titled Dharani Mandala Madhyadolage presented by artistes of Vageeswari Yakshagana Kalavardhaka Sangha. While concluding “We need to promote the desi breed of cows and the programme is aimed at inspiring farmers and animal lovers towards it. Sri Vishwaprasanna Tirtha Swamiji of Pejawar Mutt and Sri Yogananda Saraswathi Swamiji of Sri Nithyananda Yogashrama, Kondevoor, will bless the occasion. Kasaragod Gidda, Malnad Gidda and the Vechur breed of cows are the three major dwarf cattle breeds in India.

About Kasaragod Dwarf aka Kasaragod Gidda breed of Cow:

Kasaragod dwarf or Kullan or Kasargod Gidda is one amongst the three prime dwarf cattle in India, the other two being Malnad Gidda and Vechur breed of cattle. Kasaragod dwarf is mostly found in Kasargod, the northernmost district of Kerala, flanked by a vast coastal area in the West, plains in the South and hilly tracts towards the North. The breed is also found in Mangalore, Coorg and some other parts of Karnataka. Some centuries ago, this breed of cattle was known as Sahya Pashu (Sahyadri Hill Cows) and was also found in Kannur and other parts of Kerala. This breed is small-sized, friendly and understanding, and is well adapted to the hot and humid climate of Kerala. It possesses high heat tolerance and disease resistance and can survive on kitchen scraps and jungle forage. This breed is also less susceptible to mastitis, a common udder infection.

Kasaragod Dwarf breed is in much demand due to the popularity of zero-budget farming. Those who know this breed are confident that conservation of these cattle could actually help the agrarian communities to deal with their problem of sustainable progress, and could also play a vital role in the growth and development of rural areas. This breed has not been included in the list of India’s 41 native cattle breeds that have been documented by the National Bureau for Animal Genetic Resources (NBAGR) Karnal, Haryana though moves have already begun to get this breed included in the list of native cattle breeds of Kerala.

A few Characteristics of Kasargod Gidda cow are- The cattle are diminutive yet well-proportioned. .; They are usually dark-skinned, with a uniform coat of black or varied shades of chocolate, brown, or white. Spotted ones are also seen, muzzle colour is black for the majority of the cattle. The eyelids, tail switch, hoofs, and horns are mostly black. The horns are mostly short or medium-sized, curved upward and outward with variations in the horn length and shape; The forehead is straight; The ears are medium in length with horizontal orientation. The udder is bowl-shaped and small. The teat colour is mostly pink though black teats are seen in black cows. It requires about 2 kgs of feed per day while its average milk yield is around 1 litre per day. The calves weigh only 10.5 kg at birth.

Currently, more than 200 breeders and organic farmers are associated with this initiative. Organic farmers in north Kerala are determined to conserve and popularise this diminutive breed of cattle. A positive development is that Bela Cattle Farm in Badiadukka panchayat in Kerala is now being developed as a research centre under the Central Veterinary University to study, research and popularise this rare breed of Kasaragod Dwarf.

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