Madras Veterinary College

DEPARTMENT OF AGRONOMY

The Department of Agronomy was started in 1940 and is one of the oldest departments in Madras Veterinary College. The mandate of this department has been to offer courses on `Principles of Agronomy and Fodder Crop Production' and `Mixed Farming and Farming Systems Management' wherein the basic principles on soil, water, plant and climate and their interaction with raising of crops with specific emphasis on fodder crops have been imparted to the U.G. students of Veterinary College.

Objectives of the department

  • To impart education for the under graduate students in the field of Agronomy and Fodder production and Grassland management
  • To disseminate low cost input technologies in cultivation of fodders and intercropping of fodder legumes to the livestock farmers
  • To grow and maintain important species of herbal plants for use by the needy departments for further research on its application to Veterinary health care

Activities

Education

All India pattern of syllabus prescribed by the Veterinary Council of India has been introduced and accordingly one course titled `LPM 121 Fodder Production and Grass land Management' is now being offered by the Department of Agronomy during second semester for the B.V.Sc. & A.H course. To facilitate conduct of practical classes and also to fulfill the mandatory requirement of the VCI syllabus, a Fodder Crops Cafeteria has been developed under the ICAR Development Grant in the college campus in which different categories of fodder crops were raised in small plots for demonstration purpose to the U.G. students.

A full fledged Practical manual was prepared as per the lecture schedule for the practical classes with adequate assignment at the end of each exercise and distributed to all the students. This will also form as a background material for enriching the practical knowledge of the students. A total of 13 practical manuals have been brought out for the undergraduate courses by this department.

AGR 111 Principles of Agronomy and Fodder Crop Production : 1
AGR 121 Mixed Farming and Farming Systems Management. : 1
LPM 112 Fodder Production and Grass land Management : 8
LPM 121 Fodder Production and Grass land Management : 3
(Revised VCI syllabus)

Lecture notes for the course LPM 121 Fodder Production and Grass land Management were prepared in English and the same course contents have been developed in Tamil also for the benefit of the students.

Innovative teaching methods

  • Developed a Fodder Crops Cafeteria for the first time in the College Campus that facilitated conduct of practical classes with live demonstration for easy understanding by the UG students
  • E-contents for the course LPM 121 Fodder Production and Grassland Management were developed for the entire course content and uploaded in the e-mode at www.eleranvet.net with the inclusion of Animations, Images and Power point with voice over

Research

Faculty of the department was involved as one of the Co - Principal Investigators in the following externally funded research schemes

S.No Title of the Project Date of Start/Completion Funding agency Budget
(Rs. in lakhs)
Status
1
Agro-forestry  system  for  reclamation  of  problematic  soils  with  Livestock  Integration’
Five years
(2001-02 to 2005-06 )
GOI – Deptt.  of Land Resources and TANUVAS
74.55
Completed
2
Baseline  studies  for assessing the  present  status  of  Animal  Husbandry  sector       before implementation of  TNIAMWARM  Project
Two years
(2008-09 to 2009-10)
TN Livestock Development Agency
10.00
Completed
3
Developing  a  Methodology  for Estimating Livestock  Feed  and  Fodder  in  Tamil Nadu
Two years
(2008-09 to 2009-10)
Ministry of Agriculture, GOI.
3.48
Completed
4
Potential of fodder production as a means of carbon capture
Two years
(2010-11 to 2011-12)
DST- GOI
58.086
Ongoing

Extension

  • Agronomic strategies on fodder crops are disseminated to the field workers / Veterinary Assistant Surgeons and other beneficiaries through various training programmes under National Agricultural Development Programme (NADP) and Irrigated Agriculture Modernization and Water-bodies Restoration and Management (IAMWARM)
  • Production strategies in fodder crops are disseminated to the farming community through various guest lectures organized by Directorate of extension education, Krishi Vigyan Kendra, University Research Farm, VUTRCs, Non Profitable Organizations etc.
  • Further, extension activities on fodder crops are made available to the farming community through publications as popular articles in English and Tamil, pamphlets, booklets etc.
  • Exhibits regarding fodders and seed materials are displayed in the regional exhibitions and pongal vizha celebrations organized by TANUVAS

Infrastructure created

  • Agronomy laboratory was strengthened with the display of various exhibits in the form of charts, model tools and implements, chaff cutter, silo, sample seeds of fodder crops, manures and fertilizers.
  • Concept of mechanization was introduced in garden activities pertaining to the use of chain saw for tree pruning, hedge trimmer for topiary work, electrical mower for lawn maintenance and brush cutter for weed free environment.

Faculty

Dr. V.M. Sankaran, Professor and Head
Dr.C.Venilla, Assistant Professor