Tamil Nadu

Kangayam cattle mela begins

A pair of Kangayam cattle breed at the cattle mela that began on Friday.– Photo: R. VIMAL KUMAR

A pair of Kangayam cattle breed at the cattle mela that began on Friday.– Photo: R. VIMAL KUMAR  

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The otherwise quiet Kannapuram village, near Kangayam, became lively on Friday with the commencement of the around 1,100-year-old ‘Kangayam breed cattle mela’ held as part of the historic Arulmigu Mariamman temple festival.

For farmers who breed/rear Kangayam cattle, the participation in the fair has become a matter of pride even though they could sell the cattle at their farm itself.

People from different parts of Tamil Nadu, and some from other States come to buy the cattle.

Last year, almost 10,000 cows and bulls were traded at the fair. This time, the farmers/breeders are expecting a higher sales, despite the ban existing on Jallikattu.

“The rising demand for A2 variety of milk from Kangayam cows that contains more calcium and also multi-functional protein of lactoferrin otherwise found in breast milk, and the popularity of organic farming, have increased the requirement for Kangayam cattle now,” said B. Kulanthaivel (34).

His family members had been bringing over 100 bulls and cows to the festival from Palladam for the last 25 years.

Dung and urine of Kangayam cattle are used as a substitute for chemical fertilizers.

The disease-resistance features and ability to withstand heat are some of the physical features that make the Kangayam cattle used for pulling carts and ploughing in the fields.

Karthikeya Senaapathy, managing trustee of Senaapathy Kangayam Cattle Research Foundation which is involved in conservation of the breed, told The Hindu that revival of Jallikattu and rekhla races would play a significant role in protecting the breed from extinction.

“Bans have reduced demands for bulls which eventually will lead to reduction in precious germ plasm,” he said.

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Printable version | Dec 11, 2018 7:38:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/kangayam-cattle-mela-begins/article8453496.ece

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