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International Journal of Poultry Science

.: Home > International Journal of Poultry Science > 2013 > Volume 12 Number 6 > Patrick M. Kgwatalala and Phakedi Segokgo

Growth Performance of Australorp x Tswana Crossbred Chickens under an Intensive Management System

Patrick M. Kgwatalala and Phakedi Segokgo
Department of Animal Science and Production, Botswana College of Agriculture, Private Bag 0027, Gaborone, Botswana
Abstract :

Indigenous Tswana chickens are better adapted to prevailing environmental conditions and diseases than their exotic counterparts. They however exhibit slower growth rate and less mature final weight than their exotic counterparts. Crossbreeding of indigenous Tswana chickens with exotic chicken breeds can therefore be used as an alternative strategy to improve growth performance of indigenous Tswana chickens by taking advantage of breed complementarily and heterosis. The current study was therefore aimed at evaluating growth performance of Australorp × indigenous Tswana chickens F1 crossbred progeny relative to purebred indigenous Tswana chickens under an intensive management system. A total of 42 Australorp x Tswana crossbred chickens and 44 purebred indigenous Tswana chickens were evaluated for growth performance (body weight) every fortnight from 4-18 weeks of age. The chickens were raised under a deep litter house system and provided with water and commercial feeds ad libitum. Males of both crossbred and purebred chickens were generally heavier (p>0.05) than their age-matched female counterparts at different ages. Body weight was however significantly higher in Australorp x Tswana crossbred males and females than their indigenous purebred counterparts at 18 weeks of age. Growth was also more enhanced in crossbred Australorp x Tswana males than Females. Crossbreeding can therefore be used as a strategy to improve growth performance of indigenous Tswana chickens raised under an intensive management system. The study however needs to be repeated to evaluate growth performance of crossbred chickens under free range system commonly practiced in rural areas of Botswana.

Keywords :
Blue australorp, F1 crosses, indigenous tswana chicken, body weight

Date Deposited : 18 Mar 2015 10:50

Last Modified : 18 Mar 2015 11:00

Official URL: http://www.pjbs.org/ijps/back.htm

Volume 12, Number 6, - 2013 , ISSN 1682-8356

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