Comparative Physical Carcass Characteristics in the Indigenous Nigerian and Imported European Pigs
The Physical carcass characteristics of 100 indigenous Nigerian pigs (IND.) (50 gilts and 50 barrows), and 100 Large White x Landrace pigs with a similar sex ratio were compared. These were slaughtered at either one of five weights, 22.7, 34.0, 45.5, 56.8 or 68 kg live-weight, in such a way that 10 gilts and 10 barrows of each breed were slaughtered at each of the predetermined slaughter weights. For the purpose of comparing sexual influences on physical carcass traits in the indigenous pigs carcass data were obtained on an additional group of 50 indigenous boars during the same period as the above at similar slaughter weights involving similar numbers per slaughter weight. In a third experiment carcass data were collected on 40 pure Large White pigs (LW) (20 gilts and 20 barrows) and 40 indigenous x Large White pigs (IND.XLW) also made up of 20 gilts and 20 barrows. A comparison was made between these and the data on a similar number of indigenous barrows and gilts. The results indicated highly significantly different (P<0.01), proportions of lean and fat significantly (P<0.05) different proportions of bone and skin in the carcasses of IND and LWXLD pig. The LWXLD pigs had more lean, and bone, less fat and skin, than the indigenous pigs. Carcass conformation was also clearly different in both breeds. The indigenous pigs had lower proportion of lean cuts and greater proportion of the fat cuts than the LWXLD pigs at all slaughter weights. From 22.7 to 68 kg slaughter weights, the IND pigs were shorter, had thicker back fat, higher dressing percentage and smaller loin eye muscle area compared to the LWXLD pigs. Percentages lean, bone skin, ham, loin, shoulder and sum of four lean cuts decreased while percentages fat, fat cuts, trimmed fat and backfat thickness increased with increasing slaughter weights for both breeds. A comparison of carcass traits in the indigenous boars, barrows and gilts showed that the boars were leaner and had superior carcass conformation to the gilts which in turn were leaner than barrows. Crosses between the indigenous pigs and pure large White pigs were superior to the pure indigenous pigs in terms of lean to fat and thinner backfat measurements, while they were inferior to the pure Large White pigs in terms of these measurements.