African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6578

Full Length Research Paper

Population, production and improvement of local fowl of southern Nigeria ecotype

C. T. Ezeokeke
  • C. T. Ezeokeke
  • Department of Animal Science and Technology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria.
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E. A. Iyayi
  • E. A. Iyayi
  • Department of Animal Science, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.
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  •  Received: 15 October 2012
  •  Accepted: 15 October 2013
  •  Published: 26 February 2015

Abstract

There is paucity of data on local fowls’ production in Southern Nigeria. The population and identity of the farmers involved in raising the fowl is lacking. Studies were carried out in the areas that covered Anambra, Oyo and Imo States to ascertain the population, production and improvement of the local fowl.  In six hundred households in Anambra State the population of local birds was 4,971. These consisted of 911 (Chicks), 1073 (Growers), 1278 (Cocks) and 1709 (Hens), respectively. Imo State in 6 local government areas (LGAs), 300 households had 2032 local birds comprising 394 (Cocks), 614 (Hens), 478 (Growers) and 546 (Chicks) while in Oyo North LGA feeding trials were conducted to determine nutrient requirements of the fowl. Shank lengths and egg quality showed variations (P<0.05) in different localities. A standard energy and protein levels of 2,700 kcalME/kg of feed and 22% crude protein (CP) at chick phase and 3,000 kcalME/kg of feed and 17% CP at grower phase, respectively, were established for the fowl. Also feed additives such as antibiotics, prebiotics and probiotics used as growths promoters were assessed. Antibiotics did not show any positive pattern of growth promotion while the prebiotics and probiotics enhanced performance of local fowl. Plantain peels meal fed at early phase of life moderately enhanced performance of the fowl. To bridge the animal protein deficit in the nutrition of rural populace, local fowl can be used but after improvement of the fowl to commercial birds.

 

Key words: Local fowl, South Nigeria ecotype, population, production and performance.