Gape Animal Husbandry Grasscutter (Agouti) Project
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Info about the Gape Animal Husbandry Grasscutter (Agouti) Project
Under this project thirty two people from Four villages in the Gape area of Togo (Maritime region) will receive direct assistance in the form of grasscutters (agoutis) and initial veterinary and other agricultural input from Heifer-Ghana. This project will train beneficiaries in grasscutter husbandry, environmental protection and the construction of grasscutter pens. The Grasscutter (agouti-similar to a groundhog) which is widely eaten in Togo and other West African countries, has become the most hunted animal in the region. Learning to raise these animals will eliminate some of the bush burning used to hunt them and produce a safer means to access them for food, as well as income production. Though a wild animal, the grasscutter has been successfully bred in captivity. It is a hardy animal, does not easily succumb to disease and does not require much land to be reared. Promotion in resource poor communities will be a good starting point in the fight against hunger, poverty, malnutrition and bushfires. Two representative from each village will go to a training center for a three week course. The new trainers will then return to their villages to begin training others in the village who are interested in raising Agoutis. Each trainer will be provded with a grasscutter breeding unit (3 females and 1 male) and will be requried to pass on the same quantity (also 3 females and 1 male) to others in the village who want to be trained in raising grasscutters and have an acceptable pen in whith to house the animals. Trainers will be provided with material to construct a promer pen and other agricultural essentials. Communities will provide lobor, time and resources, such as straw, sand, bamboo, water and bricks for pens. Peace Corps Volunteers will provide management staff and training,as well as tracking and reporting of implementation results.