Production performance of rural chickens was studied in three agro-ecologies of Nole Kabba Woreda of west Wollega zone, about 32, 29 and 31 from mid-highland, highland and lowland agro-ecological zones, respectively and a total of 92 households and 18 key informants were used for the survey work. Finally, all the data collected were subjected to Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) version 17.0 and SAS (2002). The results obtained revealed that, statistically significant difference between the agro-ecologies in sexual maturity of indigenous chickens as measured by age at first mate (P < 0.05). There was significant difference between local and exotic chickens in rate of egg production (P < 0.05). Mean age at first egg of about 7.02 ± 0.220 and 5.66 ± 0.116 months was calculated for indigenous and exotic pullets, respectively. Overall percent hatchability of 82 and 44.36% was reported from eggs of indigenous and exotic chicken, respectively. In summary the results of this study tends to indicate that improvement in exotic chicken eggs hatchability under scavenging condition seems to be the future direction of research in the Nole Kabba Woreda.
Key words: Chicken, indigenous, exotic, household, agro-ecology.
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