The study was conducted in Misha Woreda, Hadiya Zone, Southern Ethiopia with aim of assessing the production and challenges of small ruminant animals. Data was collected via questionnaire, interview and group discussion. For the study, 4 Kebeles were taken randomly and from each kebele, 20 households were selected purposively based on the experience and involvement of small ruminant production. The result indicated that about 80% of the interviewed respondents were male headed while the remaining 20% were female headed. Among the sample respondents, about 12.5% of the respondents were illiterate and the rest 87.5% were learned at different stages of literacy ranging from elementary to high school grade levels. The prevailing sheep and goat production system common in the study area was mainly extensive (90%) with slight semi-intensive characteristics (10%). The main purposes of rearing sheep and goats in the study area were for home cash income (75%), for security (17.5%) and for slaughter during holidays (7.5%). The results further showed that the main feed source (42.5%) is communal grazing land, 22.5% house leftover and 20% crop residues in the study area. The extensive production system along with feed shortage needs improvement of husbandry practices. Shortage of feed and grazing land and lack of capital are the main problems that hamper the potential of sheep and goat production in the study area. It was concluded that different organizations like government and non-governmental should take these under consideration to improve the production of sheep and goats.
Key words: Production, small ruminant, feed shortage, crop residues.
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