Impacts of introducing exotic chicken breeds and their crosses on local chickens in Ethiopia (Published)
This study reviews the introduction of the exotic breeds and cross breeding of local chicken in Ethiopia, solution to genetic erosion and needs for conservation with aim of delivering in the short form and clear information for beneficiaries. Poultry production and its product consumption are progressively increasing globally. In Ethiopia, chicken production plays a great role as a primary supply of eggs and meat in rural and urban areas and as a source of income for smallholder farmers. The interest of the farmers to maximize poultry products is increasing. Therefore, different parts of the farmers are practicing crossbreeding unsystematically. However, crossbreeding is not advised and recommended by government due to its impact on genetic diversity and losing of the important traits of local chickens; thus, policy of the government has prepared different strategies to improve livestock development. There is no good breeding scheme introduced so far to avoid such kind of impacts or else regulator laws to avoid uncontrolled breeding activities. Therefore, conservation of locally adapted indigenous chicken breeds has become an important objective in sustainable animal breeding, as these breeds represent a unique genetic resource. And even if the indigenous chickens are low in productive performance, it has its unique and important characteristics such as brooding, tolerance of the disease and harsh environment of tropics, and giving good product under good management condition. Hence, breeding program targeting improvement of indigenous chicken should focus on within breed selection rather than crossbreeding with exotic chicken breeds, this would help to maintain the indigenous chicken unique attributes which are appreciated by producers and avoid genetic erosion and dilution and contribute to their conservation. Nevertheless, the indigenous chicken breeds in most African specifically in Ethiopia countries are little studied and the existing reports lack consistency. Therefore, further research is recommended to evaluate the performance, egg quality and carcass yield potentials of indigenous chickens under improved feeding and management systems.
Citation: Diriba L. (2022) Impacts of introducing exotic chicken breeds and their crosses on local chickens in Ethiopia, European Journal of Agriculture and Forestry Research, Vol.10, No.4, pp. 33-39