Effects of semen dosage, oviductal sperm storage and insemination interval on egg fertility, embryo mortality and hatchability in Nera Black breeder chickens


  • E. O. Ewuola University of Ibadan
  • K. T. Ogundeji
  • T. M. Osanyinlusi
  • D. M. Oyedele
  • K. A. Adebisi
  • O. A. Bolarinwa




Sperm Storage Tubules, Fertile period, Insemination interval, Layer breeder chickens


The biological basis of sustaining fertility in poultry is their ability to store sperm cells in the sperm storage tubules (SST) located in the uterovaginal junction. However, artificial insemination in poultry industry is haphazardly administered in Nigeria without regulation on semen dose and frequency of insemination for optimum fertility. The objective of this study was to establish a semen dosage and insemination interval for maximum fertility and embryonic survival in Nera black layer breeder chickens. A total of 80 breeder hens (52 weeks) were allotted to five (5) treatments with four (4) replicate per treatment. Semen was pooled from 10 matured breeder cocks and inseminated to four groups of hens at varied semen dose of 0.02mL (T1), 0.04mL (T2), 0.06mL (T3) and 0.08mL (T4) of undiluted semen while hens in T5 were mated naturally, both for two consecutive days. 0.02, 0.04, 0.06 and 0.08mL of pooled semen contained 20.43×10 , 40.87×106 , 61.30×106 and 81.74×106 motile spermatozoa. Eggs were collected, stored and artificially incubated weekly for 4 weeks. Fertility, embryo mortality and hatchability parameters were determined. Another 78 breeder hens were allocated into 4 treatments of 5 replicates per treatment with unequal number of hens and were inseminated with 0.02mL of raw semen containing 20.43 × 106 motile sperm cells at 3, 6, 9 and 12 days intervals. Fertility, hatchability and embryo mortality were determined. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and ANOVA at &0.05 Hatch of fertile eggs in T5 at week 2 (65.36±13.28) was significantly higher (p<0.05) . than T1 (33.83±12.65), T2 (13.25±6.88), T3 (39.17±14.17) and T4 (28.21±11.37). At weeks 1 and 2, there was no significant different across the treatments. Fertility at 4 weeks in T1 (11.53±6.66) was significantly (p<0.05) different from treatments T2 (0.00±0.00), T3 (0.00±0.00), T4 (1.66±1.66) and T5 (0.00±0.00). Total and early embryo mortality in week 3 was significantly higher (p<0.05) in T1 (100.00±0.00, 95.00±5.00) than in treatments T2 (43.75±0.00, 43.75±25.77), T3 (66.67±23.57, 66.67±23.57), T4 (95.00±5.00, 85.00±15.00) and T5 (37.50±23.94, 22.92±15.73). Fertility was significantly (p<0.05) higher in 3 days insemination interval (52.65±7.25) compared with 6 days (39.87±4.70), 9 days (22.98±5.71) and 12 days (36.14±6.89). At weeks 1 and 3, the hatch of fertile eggs across the treatments was not significantly (p>0.05) different from one another. This study suggests that 6 inseminating semen dose of 0.02mL containing approximately 20.43×10 motile sperm cells in Nera black layer breeder chickens will give a maximum fertile period of 5 days, while insemination interval of 3 days using 0.02mLof semen gave highest fertility level.

Author Biography

E. O. Ewuola, University of Ibadan

Department of Animal Science







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