Population dynamics and performance of exotic versus indigenous chicken population in the selected districts of North Western Amhara, Ethiopia

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TILAHUN SISAY
KEFEYALEW ALEMAYEHU
ZEWDU WULETAW

Abstract

Sisay T, Alemayehu K, Wuletaw Z. 2017. Population dynamics and performance of exotic versus indigenous chicken population in the selected districts of North Western Amhara, Ethiopia. Trop Drylands 1: 90-99. Chicken in Ethiopia contributes, respectively, 98.5% and 99.2% of the national egg and chicken meat production. The total chicken population is estimated to be 56.87 million of which 95.86, 2.79 and 1.35% are indigenous, crossbred and exotic breeds, respectively. The objective of this paper was to quantify the population dynamics and performance of exotic versus indigenous chicken population in the selected districts of northwestern Amhara, Ethiopia. Banja and Burie districts and six Kebeles (three/district) were purposively selected. A total 180 respondents were selected by systematic and simple random sampling techniques for the survey. On the other hand, a total of 90 exotic chicken owners were purposively selected for monitoring and evaluation. GLM procedure of SAS (2002) was used to quantify the fixed effects of agroecology and breeds on the egg production performance. The results revealed that the majorities (91.12%) of distributed exotic chickens were kept in traditional/backyard production system. The overall mean egg production for exotic chickens (141.58±11.5) was too low. Significantly, the mean number of clutch per year per hen of Bovans Brown chicken was higher (4.51±0.11 days) than Bovans white breeds (3.5±0.10 days). Shortage at first egg was attained from midland of Koekoek chicken breed (5.38±0.24 months) than from highland (6.54±0.10 months) in Bovans Brown chicken. A highly significant difference in mortality was observed between Bovans Brown (89%) and Koekoek breed (32.4%), respectively due to traditional farmers' management practice. Distribution of different exotic chicken genotypes in the region is increasing from time to time for the upgrading of local chicken ecotypes but, the survival, productivity and population size of exotic and their crosses were too low. On the other hand, the population size of the indigenous chicken and its productivity remains almost constant. Causes of chick mortality in the study area were disease and predator which need to be considered in the development plan of the districts. This is due to the inappropriate production system, genotype, and management. Therefore, production and productivity will be increased through the selection of indigenous chicken ecotypes and crossbreed or upgrading by introduction exotic cocks, pullets and or fertile eggs of high egg producing strains with an appropriate production system and management in respective production system.

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