HomeUswag Journal: Philippine Journal of Multidisciplinary Researchvol. 1 no. 1 (2023)

Phenotypic characterization of Philippine native carabao (Bubalus bubalis carabanensis), its utilization, management practices, and problems met in Northeast Catanduanes, Philippines

Ramon F Samonte

Discipline: Animal Science



This study aimed to conserve the Philippine native carabao's adaptability with resilient traits to diseases and environmental elements focused on ensuring food security and income for small-scale carabao farmers. A total of sixty (60) carabaos were characterized which comprised of thirty (30) carabulls and thirty (30) caracows, and sixty (60) carabao farmers were interviewed using a structured questionnaire randomly. Assessing the qualitative characteristics of the samples, findings showed that carabaos in the Viga, Bagamanoc and Panganiban were predominantly native (78.33%) and upgraded (21.37%). These carabaos were found have 457.2 kg body weight, 182.4 cm heart girth,138.3cm shoulder height, 149.0 cm body length, 70.4 cm tail length, 44.3 cm length of head 25.3 cm width of the head and 138.1 cm height of hips, on the average. Thus, a standard error (SE) of more than 0.5 showed a close relationship between the variance and manifest inbreeding. Moreover, these carabaos were commonly used in land preparation and as source of food for human consumption (carabeef), singly or both, while rarely as source of milk. Recordkeeping (60%), tethering (90%), deworming (68.3%), vaccination (70%), provision of housing or shed (75%), and branding (58.3%) were found adopted by farmers interviewed. Likewise, five problems were met namely indiscriminate age of slaughtering, weak carabao dispersal program, diseases, lack of farmer contact with extension workers, and lack of pasture due to land conversion. Based on the findings of this study, introduction of purebred stock, adoption of improved modified management practices, more linkages with academic, and funding institutions, and a "Model Carabao Farmer" scheme to entice younger generation into carabao production are recommended.


  1. Agarwal, S. K., & Tomar, O. S. (1998). Reproductive Technologies in Buffaloes. Indian Veterinary Research Institute.
  2. Castillo, L. S. (1998). Proposal: New scientific name of the domesticated swamp buffalo, the carabao (Bubalus bubalis carabanensis). In: Annual Scientific Meeting of the National Academy of Science and Technology, Manila (Philippines), 8-9.
  3. Majid, M. A. (1992). Morphometric and genetic variations in the Philippine carabao (Bubalus bubalis Linn.) and the tamaraw (Bubalus mindorensis Heude).
  4. Michelizzi, V. N., Dodson, M. V., Pan, Z., Amaral, M. E. J., Michal, J. J., McLean, D. J., Womack, J. E., & Jiang, Z. (2010). Water buffalo genome science comes of age. Int. J. Biol. Sci., 6, 333– 349. https://doi.10.7150/ijbs.6.333.
  5. Opeña, B. et. al. (2005). Establishment of Livestock Grading Standards for Philippines Use: Carabao. In: 18th National Research Symposium, Bureau of Agricultural Research. pp. 15-19.
  6. Session, T. R. (2011). Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and the International Climate Change Policy Agenda Series. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
  7. Windusari, Y., Hanum, L., Nofyan, E., Kamal, M., & Amsar, A. (2015). Characteristic of swamp buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) Pampangan at District of Banyuasin, South Sumatera, Indonesia. Abstract of Emerging Trends in Scientific Research, 4, 1-17.