A picture says more than a thousand words……as I have been raving so much about the benefits (and beauty) of livestock keeping as practiced by Rajasthan’s Raika pastoralists, I’ll just share some images from our last visit to our dang, the group of mobile shepherds that we are following in regular intervals throughout the year.
At the crack of dawn, the sheep flocks go on their first round of grazing.
While they are out, the women start preparing for breakfast.
The goats, kept mostly to provide extra milk to lambs, are herded separately.
Badl, 5 years old and currently the youngest member of the dang, has just woken up.
Preparations for making butter from the sheep milk that was collected at night
Manju poses with her friends.
Mobile dairy: churning butter from last night’s milk.
Badl says good morning to the other kids on the block.
By the time water has been fetched from a distant well, the sheep flocks have returned.
Time for more milking.
Some high yielding does get are hand-fed to keep them in the peak of their health and production.
All animals are given a regular check-up to note any possible problems – here hooves are checked for thorns.
When the animals are taken care of, there is time for personal care also.
The patel is giving instructions to the group, as he is going to Delhi to receive a national award.