The populations of the districts have several livelihoods. The first one is traditional farming using oxen, and rarely, heifers, cows, horses, and mules. Crop production is entirely rain-fed, except in a few Kebeles where small-scale water harvesting practices have been recently introduced by the Office of Agriculture and Rural Development. There is only one rainy season (summer), and it is important for the cultivation of both long- and short-cycle crops [9].

The other alternative sources of livelihood include off-farm and nonfarm activities. Nonfarm activities are practiced because of a shortage of agricultural land. Cultivated land per household is getting smaller and smaller, mainly because of high population pressure. Land and livestock productivity is declining because of natural resource depletion. The newly established houses do not have access to farmland. Thus, the communities are engaged in nonfarm activities such as pottery, metalwork, weaving, carpentry, and basket making even if their numbers are insignificant [12]. Off-farm activities (micro and small enterprises) are the second means of poverty reduction and include animal husbandry, poultry, honey production, and construction [13]. According to [14], livestock is the most valuable resource for the livelihood of the rural people. Especially, cattle are the best source of income [9]. Thus, an average annual income of 12,087,131.00 Birr has been generated from livestock production. The aggregate annual income generated from crop production is estimated at c. 19,725,688 Birr [15].

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