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close this bookCERES No. 147 May-June 1994: Cerescop (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 1994)
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Ceroscope “beautifully added”

I've been a reader of Ceres since May 1991. Although the topical articles on wide-ranging issues concerning agriculture and the environment have universal appeal, they are most relevant for developing countries.

I particularly find “Cerescope” very informative and interesting. Convey my thanks and appreciation to those who have been responsible for it (Pierre Antonios, Peggy Polk, Kate Dunn) for editing this column so beautifully.

Syed Sami Ahmad
Ghazipur, India

I wanted to tell you that I enjoy Ceres. It is informative, attractively laid out and very readable. I like the relatively short (Cerescope) articles, practical for those of us who are busy and never seem to have enough time to sit and read.

I work in conservation and rural development, so I have plenty of people to pass it on to.

Dhyain Jennifer Bongor
Nairobi, Kenya

African goals In Colombia

As a Colombian government veterinarian, I'd like to inform you of a project I'm planning and would like to implement in the Armero region, Tolima department, which was the scene in 1985 of the tragic eruption of the volcano Nevada del Ruiz. It's a question of exploitation of the so-called West African goat. This ruminant is raised in our region without the appropriate means and techniques, but furnishes meat for the poorest people and is a support to the family economy which has been insufficiently exploited and appreciated. There are some 18 000 West African goats scattered on farms and in villages.

I wish some international organization would collaborate with us to launch a project to raise these goats in enclosures, where we could measure the known parameters and make crosses to improve the breed, because inter-breeding has led to degeneration. Any study or experiment in improving these ruminants that could be made available to us would be useful for such a project. I'd like, particularly, to know the results of work done by Helen Turner, H.W. Vivanco, E.S.E. Galal and C. Devendra.

I enclose a photo of a troop of goats looking for something to browse in a field where the lava flow passed after the eruption of Armero. It's a situation we want to change.

Jose Eduardo Peralta Varon
Ibague-Tolima, Colombia

Ed. Note: Your request for information on husbandry of the West African coat has been passed to the FAd Animal Production and Health Division, whose specialists will contact you directly. In addition, Ceres sends you a complimentary copy of the FAO publication Observations on the goat, as well as a copy of Ceres No. 134, which contains articles on farmers' efforts to recover from the effects of the eruption of Mount Pinatubo, in the Philippines.

“It keeps me awake nights”

Your magazine is of interest to our group, Families for the Agro-veterinary and Medical Development Project (FAPRODARME), and counts among my own research documents. We found the articles in No. 136 useful such as the discovery of a rapid means of rice selection, as described by Alan Carpenter in Computerized phytotron speeds rice breeding, which keeps me awake nights. In the same issue the article by John Weeks, Making the impossible possible: growing crops with salt water, was instrumental.

Our country is sick, and its economy gravely ill for us in the lower class. Our association has thousands of difficulties. We've tried for six years to establish projects, but have no means.

Mujinga Maskhi Musumary
Likasi, Katanga, Zaire

Wrong tack on ticks

Regarding the article in No. 142, A new tack on ticks: enlisting the immune response, the author interviewed me for this article, and the material under the heading “seeking solutions” is based on what I told the writer. However, the sentence “Dr. Rupert Pegram, who is working on an East Coast fever and tick control project also in Zimbabwe...” is in error. East Coast fever per se does not occur in Zimbabwe. The term I used, as in the FAO project document, is Theileriosis.

I would be grateful if you could publish a correction, to avoid embarrassment to the government of Zimbabwe, myself and FAO.

R. G. Pegram
Harare, Zimbabwe

Ed. Note: Here is a perfect example of how a simple juxtaposition of words can lead to errors. The sentence in question was originally: “Dr. Rupert Pegram, who is working on an East Coast fever control project, and also on tick control in Zimbabwe...” In typesetting, the word order was inadvertent reversed. Ceres apologizes for the mistake.

Biotechnology centre

In Ceres No. 141, I read that the biotechnology centre formerly administered by UNIDO is now independent. I'm very interested in the same areas in which the centre is engaged. However, you did not mention where the centre is now located.

Ahmed M. Irrobeh
Arab Company for Livestock Development
Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Ed. Note: The new address of the centre is as follows: International Centre of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), Padriciano 99, 1-34012 Trieste, Italy.

Permission to reduce

I've read your excellent No. 138 (Integrated farming systems), and I realize your magazine reflects the best information available on the theme of development and on avant-garde research in all areas Reading it is truly stimulating.

I'd like to ask permission to use a reduced version of the cover drawing by Clarissa Mitchell in our ecological bulletin.

Claudio Marquez
Martinez-Bs.As., Argentina

Ed. Note: Permission to reprint material from Ceres is granted provided the artist's name is given and the source is credited as follows: Reprinted from Ceres the FAO reviews

“We cannot even eat”

The project I'm managing is quite new and we are just trying to gather funds here and there to keep it afloat, so the university community can benefit from our effort. We don't have funds enough to sustain our various programs and the university authority is unwilling to provide funds for outside publications. Our pay is so poor that we cannot even eat well in a month.

Since we are working for the benefit of the rural poor, who come to our farm to get training without paying fees, I would like FAO to extend a helping hand by supplying Ceres free of charge.

Bernard Duncan Umanah
Faculty of Agriculture University of Calabar
Calabar, Nigeria

Ed. Note: Your name has been added to the list of qualified readers in developing countries for whom FAO bears the cost of a subscription to Ceres.