Genetic response to short-term index selection in females and mass selection in males of the Nigerian heavy local chicken ecotype

Authors

  • C. C. Ogbu Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Umuahia Abia State
  • C. C. Nwosu University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.51791/njap.v44i2.1116

Keywords:

Genetic gain, mass selection, selection index, body weight, egg production, indigenous chicken

Abstract

The study aimed to determine genetic gain in growth and egg production in the Nigerian indigenous chicken (NIC) subjected to multiple trait index selection for females and mass selection for males. The experimental birds (G generation) were generated from a reference 0 population of NIC and reared according to sire families from hatch. At point of lay, females were housed individually in laying cages for egg production. Hens were selected based on index scores calculated using an index of weighted breeding values constructed from own performance in body weight at first egg (BWFE), egg weight (EW) and egg production (EN), trait heritabilities and relative economic weights while cocks were selected based on own performance in body weight at 39 weeks of age (BW ). Selected parents were mated to 39 generate the G generation which in turn yielded the parents of the G generation. A control 1 2 population was used to measure environmental effects. Data were analyzed using the Restricted Maximum Likelihood (REML) computer programme. For hens, expected average direct genetic gain per generation was 12.58, 2.98g and 25.04g for EN, EW and BWFE, respectively while realized genetic gain was 2.19 and 1.59 for EN, 1.65 and 0.26g for EW, and -25.60 and 123.64g for BWFE for G and G generations, respectively. The corresponding 0 1 values for ratio of realized to expected genetic gains were 2.27 and 1.22, 3.15 and 0.24, and 0.95 and 2.21, respectively. Heritability (h2) ranged from 0.12 to 0.24 for EN, 0.34 to 0.43 for EW and 0.57 to 0.69 for BWFE, across the three generations. Similar improvements in BW 39 were observed in males with an average expected gain of 508.50g per generation. In conclusion, growth and egg production in the NIC can be improved using mass selection for cocks and index of weighted breeding values for hens.

Author Biographies

C. C. Ogbu, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Umuahia Abia State

Department of Animal Health and Production

C. C. Nwosu, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State

Department of Animal Science

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Published

2020-12-26

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