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dc.contributor.authorMenge, Enock Ondeyo-
dc.description.abstractIndigenous chicken are mainly kept in subsistence systems and constitute about 80% of Africa’s poultry flock. Currently, there are no well-defined breeding goals and genetic improvement programmes for the indigenous chicken are rare. The overall aim of this study was to develop breeding goals for use in production systems utilising the indigenous chicken. The specific objectives were to construct a deterministic bio-economic model for the economic evaluation of production systems utilising indigenous chicken, to identify breeding goal traits and estimate their economic values under different production circumstances and to determine the influence of economic values on genetic gain in the breeding goal traits. To construct the bio-economic model, three production systems were identified based on the level of intensification and management regime, namely: confined full ration system (CFRS); semiintensive system (SIS); and free range system (FRS). The model was able to predict liveweight on every subsequent day starting with the hatching weight as the initial weight and the average daily gains for the birds, and used these outputs to estimate feed intake. The outputs from the model included revenue, costs and profitability in the different production systems. The traits which influenced profitability were identified and considered as potential breeding goal traits. They included live weight (LW) of pullets (LWp) and cockerels (LWc), egg weight (EW), hatchability (HTC), fertility (FRT); chick survival rate (CSR), age at first egg (AFE) and number of eggs per clutch (NeCl). Economic values were derived for each of the traits above. The AFE and EW had negative economic values in all systems (-14.20, -1.142 and –0.757; - 0.052, -0.045 and -0.045) in CFRS, SIS and FRS respectively. The rest of the traits had positive economic values in all production systems. In terms of magnitude, semi-intensive system had high values for FRT and HTC. CSR was the most valuable trait in FRS and SIS with economic values of +14.114 and +19.227 respectively. The influence of the estimated economic values on genetic improvement was also assessed using different selection indices. The first selection index (I) included information on LWc, LWp, EW and CSR whereas the second selection index (II) included information on AFE, HTC, FRT and NeCl. Economic response in index I was KSh. 133.31; 66.71 and 105.33 for CFRS, SIS and FRS respectively and was KSh. 155.95; 20.13 and 13.14 for CFRS, SIS and FRS respectively for the second index. The economic values were fairly stable to changes in prices of meat and eggs and can be used to set up improvement programmes for indigenous chicken in Kenya. There was a clear relationship between the economic values and genetic gain. This study came up with breeding Goals appropriate for genetic improvement programmes for indigenous chicken in Kenya.en_US
dc.publisherEgerton Universityen_US
dc.subjectBreeding -- Indigenous chickenen_US
dc.titleBreeding goals for production systems utilizing indigenous chicken in Kenyaen_US
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