Provinces across Thailand have held activities to mark Thai Buffalo Conservation Day, which seeks to encourage farmers to return to using buffaloes.
In Uthai Thani province, the Dong Kwang Buffalo Conservation Farmers’ Group organized a blessing ceremony for their buffaloes. The ceremony is a traditional practice based on the belief that farmers should express appreciation towards their beasts of burden. This year the event was organized to reverse the downturn in the use of buffaloes.
May 14 was mandated by the Cabinet as a Thai Buffalo Conservation Day in remembrance of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s establishment of the Cow and Buffalo Bank project.
In Nakhon Ratchasima, two buffaloes were ‘wed’ as part of the day’s celebrations. The province also organized a traditional buffalo tilling demonstration, a buffalo insemination demonstration and a buffet for buffaloes. The activities were in the hope of reminding the Thai public of the nation’s long standing dependence on the buffalo.
The Livestock Department chose to highlight Nakhon Ratchasima’s Jorakehin community, where 274 farms have owned and used over 700 buffaloes for 16 years now. It hopes to promote better breeding practices to increase the buffalo population.