Influence of weight grouping on the short term egg production of two strains of layer type chicken
An experiment was conducted using 400 pullets each of H and N brown Nick (Strain I) and Black Olympia (Strain 2) to determine the influence of weight grouping on short term egg production traits. The two strains of layer type chickens were separated on the basis of plumage pattern and body weight at three weeks of age. The result indicates that the high bodyweight (HBW) groups were signiicantly (P < 005) heavier than the lght bodyweight (LBW) categories up to the time ofirst egg in both strains. The HBW and LBW groups were smilar in total feed to first egg in both strains. The HBW lines in strain 2 produced significantly (P < 005) heavier eggs at first egg, at 30and 40 weeks compared to the LBW class. There was no significant (P > 0.05) difference betweenthe HBW and LBW lines in strain I for weight o first egg, egg weight at 30 and 40 weeks respectively. Henday rate of lay and total egg mass did not vary according tobodyweightgroups inboth strains 1 and 2 However, the light brown pullet groups (LBHBW and LBLBW) in strain I weresignificantly (P < 005) superior to the dark brown counterparts (DBHBW and DBLBW) in henday rate of lay and total egg mass. The results further showed that the HBW groups in strain 1 were significantly (P < 005) more efficient in converting feed to eggs than the LBW counterparts. In strain 2, there was no significant (P > 0.05) difference between the HBW and LBW groups in feed per dozen eggs. The comparative performance between the two strains of chicken showed that strain I was signficanty(P < 0.01) superior to strain 2 in weight of first egg, egg weightat 30 and 40 weeks and henday rate of lay respectively. The two strains of chicken were similar in body weight at first egg and feed per dozen eggs. Based on these results, the only apparent advantage of rearing the HBW and LBW pullet groups separately was in the efficiency of converting feed to eggs in srain I and in weight of first eggs, egg weight at 30 and 40 weeks instrain 2 Between thetwo strains of chicken, farmers may opt for srain I pullets because of its superior performance in egg number and egg weight traits.
Keywords: Bodyweight groups, Egg production, Bird strains, Superiority