ASSESSMENT OF ECONOMIC BEHAVIOUR AND TREND OF LIVESTOCK REARING OF THE FARMERS IN RURAL AREAS OF WESTERN DIVISION OF FIJI
Livestock husbandry is one of the branches of agriculture farming concerned with animals raised for milk, meat, eggs, fiber, or other products. It includes regular care, selective breeding and the raising of livestock. In developing countries such as Fiji, the livestock production sector is highly competitive, but it still has considerable gaps in current literature. This research fills the lacuna by investigating livestock rearers' economic behaviour and analyses its trend in Fiji's western division. Both primary and secondary data sources have been used to gather information. One hundred farmers from the villages of Nadi, Ba and Tavua districts were selected randomly. Data for eighty-two responses were received, which covered social and economic perspectives to analyse livestock rearers' involvement in diverse livelihood activities in the understudied area. The collected data were analysed with simple statistical techniques. The research purports that majority of the farmers were involved in crops and vegetable farming followed by crop and livestock farming. The research findings indicate that with the increase in education level, the interest of the people in agriculture, particularly in livestock farming, has declined. Most of the young people in the age group of 20-30 years revealed unwillingness in livestock husbandry in addition to majority reared livestock for subsistence purposes. However, a trend of livestock rearing in the study area is increasing at a languid pace.