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International Journal of Poultry Science
Year: 2010  |  Volume: 9  |  Issue: 8  |  Page No.: 744 - 748

Part-period Egg Production and Egg Quality Characteristics of Two Ecotypes of Nigerian Local Chickens and Their F1 Crosses

O.M. Momoh, A.O. Ani and L.C. Ugwuowo    

Abstract: Adaptation of the local chickens in Nigeria to the different agro-ecological zones has produced ecotypes that can be conveniently classified on the basis of body weight and size into two viz; Heavy Ecotype (HE) and Light Ecotype (LE). These distinct types may differ in their egg production characteristics. Short-term egg production and egg quality characteristics of HE and LE and their F1 crosses (HExLE and LExHE) were studied. The objective of the study was to evaluate the short-term egg production and quality traits of the HE, LE and their F1 reciprocal crosses. Data on percent hen-day production, egg number per hen, egg weight and egg mass of 50 pullets each of HE, LE, HEXLE and LEXHE were collected. Also, external and internal egg quality traits were assessed on a total of 640 eggs. Data were subjected to ANOVA technique. Result showed that there was no significant (p>0.05) genetic group effect on short-term percent hen-day production, egg number and egg mass. However, genetic group significantly affected egg weight (p<0.05). Genetic group effect was significant (p<0.01) in all the egg quality traits studied except shell weight. The crossbred groups demonstrated heterotic effects in egg width and egg shape index but their performances in the other egg quality traits remained intermediate between the two parents. On the basis of short-term egg production the HE and LE may not be considered as distinct strains. Egg quality traits obtained are comparable with most exotic breeds thus demonstrating high egg quality traits of the local chickens of Nigeria.

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