The government encourages animal husbandry through programs for cattle breeding, veterinary services, cultivation of pasture crops, and improvement of fish, poultry, and pig stocks. Between 1976-78 and 1986-88, the stock of all farm animals increased greatly: cattle by 69 percent to 588,000 head; goats by 128 percent to 73,000; pigs by 103 percent to 1.5 million; horses by 59 percent to 42,000; buffaloes by 55 percent to 1 million; and chickens by 101 percent to 8 million. Increases, however, would, have been significantly greater without diseases and a persistent shortage of animal feed. Disease is a serious problem: there is a significant annual mortality of chickens and pigs in most villages, and buffaloes are also frequently subject to epidemics.
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