a system of practices in the USSR for development of animal husbandry, implemented by state agricultural organs and specialists.
The specialized network of zootechnical service was created beginning in 193. Previously its tasks were carried out through the overall state agronomic system. The posts of senior zootechnician, zootechnicians for leading sectors of animal husbandry, and small-livestock specialists were added to the staffs of raion land departments under raion executive committees. Zootechnical service to kolkhozes was implemented by district zootechnicians. In each raion there were two to four zootechnical districts serviced by one or two specialists. Zootechnicians of raion land departments and districts carried out all zootechnical measures on kolkhozes and in population areas where cattle were used and kept by individual peasants. During this period a pedigree system for animal husbandry was established in the country. The reproduction of pedigree cattle was concentrated on pedigree sovkhozes and on pedigree farms of kolkhozes. In order to assist kolkhozes in breeding high-quality cattle in areas of mass distribution of highly productive cattle, a network of state breeding grounds was established, the system of state stables was expanded, and the system of state breeding books was essentially created anew. By 1940 there were 12,000 zootechnical districts throughout the country; more than 40,000 zootechnicians worked in village areas.
In 1940 zooveterinary and veterinary-feldsher points were organized in each raion under raion land departments in order to improve the system of zootechnical service, which had been separated from veterinary maintenance of livestock. The position of senior veterinary doctor was added to the staffs of raion land departments. In the beginning of the 1950’s machine-tractor stations, to which the district zooveterinary network had been transferred, were charged with servicing kolkhoz livestock. Veterinary hospitals were established based on central zooveterinary districts. In raions where kolkhozes were not serviced by machine-tractor stations, a unified zooveterinary network was preserved, subordinate to raion administrations for agriculture and procurements. Zootechnicians and veterinary doctors served in such administrations.
By the mid-1950’s the system of pedigree farms took final shape, providing kolkhozes and sovkhozes with breeding sires and zooveterinary service according to the line of breeding livestock; the system included pedigree stud farms, reproduction sovkhozes, kolkhoz breeding farms, and state stations for breeding operations and artificial insemination of animals created on the basis of state breeding grounds. The network of breeding farms is serviced principally by specialists (zootechnicians and veterinary doctors) with higher educations. In 1958, in conjunction with the reorganization of machine-tractor stations and the sale of farm machinery to kolkhozes, zootechnicians were transferred to work directly at kolkhozes, which they previously had serviced as staff members of machine-tractor stations. Since the mid-1960’s the staffs of raion agricultural administrations of raion executive committees have included a group of live-stock specialists, headed by a chief zootechnician; on each farm (kolkhoz, sovkhoz) there are sector zootechnicians. State stations for breeding operations and artificial insemination, which have their own staffs of selection zootechnicians, are subordinated to raion agricultural administrations. In 1971 state inspectorates for purchases and quality of agricultural products were created in raions. The staffs of these inspectorates include zootechnician inspectors who audit raion kolkhoz and sovkhoz implementation of plans for sales to the state of livestock products; they also check on the quality of production.
The system of zootechnical service includes scientific-research institutions which are developing scientific recommendations on livestock questions for introduction into agricultural production. In a number of raions, scientific-research institutes and laboratories have their own experimental stations. The Ministry of Agriculture of the USSR has established in krais, oblasts, and raions a network of agricultural testing stations where zootechnicians are conducting operations to verify and introduce into production applied scientific recommendations on animal husbandry.
P. A. ESAULOV