Livestock Research for Rural Development 18 (8) 2006 Guidelines to authors LRRD News

Citation of this paper

Studies on growth performance in Kadaknath breed of poultry

M S Thakur*, S N S Parmar and P V A Pillai

Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics, College of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry,
JNKVV, Jabalpur (MP), India
drmohansingh@gmail.com


Abstract

The studies on growth pattern and gain in body weight were conducted under ICAR ad hoc project on Kadaknath breed of poultry available in Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh.

The overall average body weights pooled for both districts i.e. Jhabua-I (Meghnagar) and Jhabua-II (Jobat) from 0 to 4 weeks of age ranged from 28±0.17 to 111±1.43 g. The pooled overall average body weights for both the districts from 6 to 20 weeks (fortnightly) ranged from 168±1.81 to 868±5.54 g and for 6 to 12 months (monthly) ranged from 1003±5.97 to 1534±7.16 g. The average weekly gain in body weight pooled over two districts for 0-4 weeks, 4-20 weeks and 20-52 weeks were 21±2.83, 48±2.09 and 22±1.04 g respectively. The Kadaknath birds attain 1kg body weight between 6 to 7 months of age and the birds reached around 1.5 kg at 1 year of age. The growth trends in both sexes showed linear increase in body weights; however, the rate of increase in body weights was higher in males as compared to females, thus showing clear sex dimorphism.

Key words: Body weights, growth rate, indigenous chicken, sex-dimorphism


Introduction

Kadaknath is an important indigenous breed of poultry inhabitating vast areas of Western Madhya Pradesh mainly the Jhabua and Dhar Districts and adjoining areas of Gujarat and Rajasthan. But because of indiscriminate crossbreeding with RIR and other breeds the pure Kadaknath birds are very rarely available in Dhar and adjoining areas of Gujarat and Rajasthan. At present the Kadaknath birds are mainly available in Jhabua District of Western Madhya Pradesh. The Jhabua District is situated in the Western part of the Madhya Pradesh in between the latitudes (N) 20o 50' and 23o 40' and longitude (E) 74o 30' and 75o 16'. The mean altitude ranges from 450 to 700 m above mean sea level. The District covers 0.68 million ha geographical area. The climate is hot semi-arid with an annual rainfall of 500 to 1000 mm. The rainfall is erratic and annual variation of rainfall is a constant feature. The minimum average temperature is 10oC and the maximum average temperature reaches up to 41 to 43oC.

This breed has evolved through natural selection in indigenous agro-ecological conditions and is well adapted to the local environment. The Kadaknath birds reveals appreciable degree of resistance to diseases compared with other exotic breeds of fowl in its natural habitat in free range. Kadaknath birds are also resistant to extreme climatic conditions like summer heat and cold winter stress and can thrive very well under adverse environments like poor housing, poor management and poor feeding. Since a long time, Kadaknath breed of poultry was reared by tribals/adivasies (Bhils, Bhillalas and others) and therefore through many generations of selection and fixation of genes some of the important breed characteristics had been established. There are three main varieties of Kadaknath breed, which are found in Jhabua District. They are Jet black, Pencilled and Golden Kadaknath. The Jet black adult males and females are black in colour, the Golden adult male and females were basically black in colour with Golden feathers on head and neck, whereas in Pencilled variety adult male and female plumage was black with white feathers on neck. In all the three varieties, skin, beak, shanks, toes and soles of males as well as females were dark gray coloured, whereas tongue was dark gray or light black colour. Comb, Wattles and earlobes were light gray to dark gray coloured. However, in comb, Wattles and earlobes purple hue coloured was also observed. In all the three varieties of Kadaknath breed most of the internal organs exhibit intense black colouration which is due to the deposition of melanin pigment in the connective tissue of organs and in the dermis (Rao and Thomas 1984).  Kadaknath breed is poor in egg production potential, but their black flesh is very delicious and popular. Its flesh is of higher value and is being used for the treatment of many diseases in human beings by tribals / adivasies living in Jhabua District of Madhya Pradesh. However, this needs proper scientific evaluation. In the whole of the region,  Kadaknath birds are in great demand and are very costly. The meat and eggs are also reckoned to be a rich source of protein (Rao and Thomas 1984).

Poultry development in India has made impressive progress during the last three decades evolving from backyard ventures to a full-fledged commercial agro industrial business mainly due to comprehensive research and development initiated by the Government and subsequently taken up by the organized private sector. Backyard poultry requiring hardly any infrastructure set-up is a potent tool for upliftment of the poorest of the poor. It has also been noticed that the demand for rural backyard poultry is quite high in tribal areas. Among the poor villagers, backyard poultry farming is an age-old practice where they keep mostly desi / indigenous birds which scavenge in the backyard and nearby field with very little health care and management. Their growth potential is low;  however, what ever they produce is net profit to the farmers / owner.

Purity of native breeds has become questionable due to large-scale introduction of exotic breeds under various rural development programmes undertaken by the Government. Need of conservation and improvement of animal / poultry genetic resources has been globally accepted. In India, the National  Bureau of Animal Genetic Resource (NBAGR) was established in 1984 at Karnal, which is functioning as a nodal agency for characterization and conservation of animal genetic resources. NBAGR has formulated certain survey guide lines and standard questionnaires based on FAO recommendation with the objective of identifying the breeding area, geographical and demographical distributions, proper genetic evaluation in terms of morphological traits, production potential and reproductive status of various indigenous breeds of livestock and poultry. Further, it was aimed at identification of superior herd/flock/individual animals, which should be specially considered in breed characterization, conservation and improvement programmes.

However, there is very little information available regarding description, native breeding areas, geographical, demographical, morphological and productive traits of the Kadaknath breed of poultry. This breed, due to pressure from high yielding genetic stock is on the verge of extinction. The conservation and systematic study of this breed using modern technologies is essential for the assessment of its genetic potential along with other traits as a  pure breed.

Therefore, a planned scientific survey based on questionnaires developed by National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources, Karnal was warranted.


Materials and methods

The studies on growth pattern and gain in body weight were conducted under ICAR Ad-hoc project on Kadaknath breed of poultry available in Jhabua district of western Madhya Pradesh.The recording of body weight was conducted with the help of two Supervisors and ten Enumerators in various centres using  a questionnaire developed by National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources (NBAGR), Karnal. The body weights were recorded at weekly intervals from 0 to 4th weeks of age, at fortnightly intervals after 4th week to 20th week of age and at monthly interval thereafter up to 12 months of age. The body weights were recorded for males and females separately from 6th week onwards.

The data collected through the questionnaire from various field survey centres were analyzed using standard statistical methods (Steel and Torrie 1986). The MS Excel software and the software provided by NBAGR, Karnal were used for data analysis.


Results and discussion

The present investigation was conducted to find out the growth pattern and gain in body weight in the Kadaknath breed of poultry under field conditions. Native chickens have special characteristics of tropical adaptability, better resistance to disease and meat quality. Exploitation of these qualities using advanced breeding methods would lead to economically viable backyard poultry keeping which can be used on larger scale in rural / tribal areas.

Comparative growth performance in the two districts [Jhabua-I (Meghnagar) and Jhabua-II (Jobat)]
Weekly body weight (0-4week)

As shown in Table 1, the differences at 0 and 1 week of age were found to be non-significant and at 2 weeks the difference was significant (p≤0.05) whereas at 3 and 4 weeks of age the differences between the two centres/districts were found to be highly significant (p≤0.01). The significant to highly significant differences between two centres may be due to variation in management practices followed by the farmers of both the centres.


Table 1.   Overall average body weight (g) from 0 to 4 weeks of Kadaknath birds: District Jhabua- I (Meghnagar) and District Jhabua II   (Jobat)

Centre

JhabuaI (Meghnagar)

Jhabua-II (Jobat)

Overall

t - value

Age in weeks

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

N

0 week

280.19

1549

290.15

2590

280.17

4139

0.16NS

1 week

400.48

1549

370.22

2590

380.35

4139

0.90NS

2 weeks

600.82

1549

500.42

2590

540.62

4139

2.35*

3 weeks

881.25

1549

710.40

2590

770.83

4139

2.98**

4 weeks

1282.25

1549

1030.60

2590

1121.43

4139

4.18**

M-Male, F- Female, N-Number of observation, SE Standard error, 
* Significant (P<0.05), ** Highly significant P<0.05),   
NS Non significant  (P<0.05)


Mishra (1983) reported higher body weights at 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 weeks of age in Kadaknath breed of poultry as 29±0.26, 37±0.38, 58±1.00, 83±1.69 and 123±2.47 g respectively, under farm conditions; whereas the body weights were found marginally lower in the present study under field conditions.

Gurung and Singh (1999) conducted studies under field conditions at 0 to 4 weeks of age in Aseel breed of poultry. They reported higher body weights at 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 weeks of age as 29±0.05, 40±0.05, 55±0.06, 76±0.06 and 107±0.11 g respectively, which might be due to larger body size of Aseel as compared to Kadaknath breed of poultry.

Singh et al (1999) reported higher weights at day old Aseel (33±0.30 g) and naked neck (34±0.36 g) chicks under farm conditions; whereas Chatterjee et al (2002) reported lower body weights at 4 weeks of age under backyard (53±1.41 g) and intensive system (74±2.32 g) in Nicobari fowl.

Fortnightly body weight (6-20 weeks)

Table 2.   Average body weights (g) from 6 to 20 weeks of Kadaknath birds : District Jhabua- I (Meghnagar)  and District Jhabua II (Jobat)

Age in weeks

Jhabua-I (Meghnagar)

Jhabua-II (Jobat)

Overall

N

t - value

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

6 weeks

1862.86

1904

1490.75

1850

1681.81

3754

3.51**

8weeks

2623.57

1904

2161.49

1850

2392.53

3754

3.99**

10 weeks

3414.02

1904

2972.11

1850

3193.07

3754

3.51**

12 weeks

4334.17

1901

3882.42

1850

4113.30

3751

3.54**

14 weeks

5324.75

1882

4972.45

1850

5143.60

3732

2.52*

16 weeks

6434.86

1818

6103.01

1850

6263.94

3668

2.42*

18 weeks

7585.22

1791

7243.71

1855

7414.47

3646

2.39*

20 weeks

8866.18

1759

8504.29

1830

8685.54

3589

2.45*

M-Male, F- Female, N-Number of observation, SE Standard error, 
* Significant (P<0.05),  ** Highly significant (P<0.05),  NS Non significant  (P<0.05)


As shown in Table 2, the differences at 6, 8, 10 and 12 weeks of age were found to be highly significant (p≤0.01), which indicates variation in the management practices between two districts i.e. Jhabua-I (Meghnagar) and Jhabua-II (Jobat). The variation in the management practices includes vaccination of birds at early ages and sufficient grain/ kitchen waste feed supplementation.

Mishra (1983) reported higher body weights as 249±4.03, 397±5.23, 555±6.96 and 754±4.72 g, respectively at 6, 8, 10 and 12 weeks of age in Kadaknath breed of poultry under farm condition; whereas Singh and Singh (1988) also reported higher body weight (250 g) at 8 weeks of age in Kadaknath breed of poultry under farm conditions.Gurung and Singh (1999) conducted field survey studies in Aseel breed of poultry in two districts of M.P. and one district of Andhra Pradesh. They reported higher body weight as 161±0.19, 234±0.14, 317±0.18 and 408±0.22 g, respectively at 6, 8, 10 and 12 weeks of age under field conditions whereas Singh et al(1999) reported higher body weight (552 g) at 10 weeks of age in Aseel breed of poultry. Chatterjee et al (2002) reported lower body weight as 112±2.45 and 117±3.64 g, 183±5.11 and 222±12.60 g, and 230±8.54 and 342±6.82 g, respectively at, 6, 8 and 10 weeks of age under backyard and intensive system of farming in Nicobari fowl as compared to Kadaknath breed body weight at 6, 8 and 10 week of age.

The differences in body weights at 14, 16, 18 and 20 weeks between two districts were found to be significant (p≤0.05), which might be due to variation in the management practices like vaccination and grain/ kitchen waste feed supplementation by the farmers at these centres.

Singh and Singh (1998) reported higher body weight (1050 g) at 20 week of age in Kadaknath breed of poultry. Gurung and Singh (1999) conducted field survey studies in two district of M.P. and one district of Andhra Pradesh in Aseel breed of poultry at 14, 16, 18 and 20 weeks of age. They reported higher body weights as 574±0.25, 634±0.28, 777±0.33 and 934±0.61 g, respectively at 14, 16, 18 and 20 weeks of age in Aseel birds, which might be due to large body size of Aseel bird as compared to Kadaknath bird.

Monthly body weight (6-12 months of age)

Table 3.  Overall average body weight (g) from 6 to 12 months of Kadaknath birds : District Jhabua- I Meghnagar) and District Jhabua II (Jobat)

Age in months

Jhabua-I (Meghnagar)

Jhabua-II (Jobat)

Overall

N

t - value

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

6 months

10266.20

1455

9735.74

1108

10035.97

2563

3.41**

7months

11465.99

1455

10865.75

1073

11205.87

2528

3.82**

8 months

12345.72

1390

11526.08

1073

11995.90

2463

5.08**

9 months

13196.44

1380

12195.77

1058

12766.11

2438

8.44**

10 months

13856.43

1360

12866.32

995

13436.38

2355

6.24**

11 months

14636.52

1320

13517.16

995

14156.84

2315

7.21**

12 months

15767.05

1288

14797.26

990

15347.16

2278

6.10**

M-Male, F- Female, N-Number of observation, SE Standard error,  * Significant (P<0.05),  ** Highly significant     (P<0.05), NS Non significant  (P<0.05)


The differences in body weights between two districts were found to be highly significant (p≤0.01).No work has been done under field conditions with respect to growth performance of Kadaknath birds. However Gurung and Singh (1999) conducted field survey studies in Aseel breed of poultry in two districts of Madhya Pradesh and one district of Andhra Pradesh. They reported higher body weights as 1133±1.52, 1244±3.12, 1551±7.78 and 1743±3.40 g, respectively at 6, 7, 8 and 9 months of age, which might be due the larger body size of Aseel breed of poultry as compare to Kadaknath breed of poultry.

No report is available for body weights at 10, 11 and 12 months of age in Kadaknath breed of poultry. However Gurung and Singh (1999) conducted field survey studies in two districts of Madhya Pradesh and one district of Andhra Pradesh in Aseel breed of poultry. They reported higher body weights as 1964±12.25, 2249±11.28 and 2590±17.18 g respectively at 10, 11 and 12 months of age. It was observed that birds attain 1 kg body weight between 6 to 7 weeks of age and the weight reached around 1.5 kg by 1 year of age.

Gain in body weight

For estimation of average weekly gain in body weights, linear regressions methods were used, taking the body weights as dependent variable and age in weeks as independent variable. The 52 weeks period was divided into three phases 0 - 4 (Phase - I), 4 - 20 (Phase - II) and 20 - 52 weeks (Phase - III). This classification was based on the growth curve (Figure 1).



Figure 1.
  Pooled body weight for Jhabua-I(Meghnagar) and Jhabua-II(Jobat)


The weekly gain in body weights was obtained separately for the three phases for each district and also on pooled basis (Table 4).


Table 4.   Linear regression estimates for gain in body weight (g) SE in Kadaknath birds

Linear regression

Phase I

0-4 weeks (bSE)**

Phase II

4-20 weeks (bSE)**

Phase III

20-52 weeks (bSE)
**

Overall

0-52 weeks (bSE)**

Centres

A. Centres:  Jhabua I (Meghnagar)

E11

Thandla

264.30

561.69

171.66

362.13

E12

Kalyanpura

192.35

542.66

290.92

401.32

E13

Jhabua

182.92

341.87

300.77

330.77

E14

Para

293.81

562.01

161.82

352.11

E15

Rama

311.81

371.90

251.08

320.79

Overall  (J-I)

253.02

481.98

231.06

351.29

B. Centres: Jhabua-II (Jobat)

E21

Bhabra

172.03

541.97

171.56

321.82

E22

Ambua

172.15

552.72

151.72

342.08

E23

Udaygarh

172.55

433.36

271.16

351.08

E24

Bori

243.74

441.62

231.09

331.12

E25

Ranapur

173.27

422.39

220.77

311.04

Overall  (J-II)

182.74

482.33

211.02

331.38

Pooled Overall
 (J-I + J-II)

212.83

482.09

221.04

341.33

b Regression coefficient, SE Standard error,   ** Highly significant  (P<0.01),
 J-I Jhabua-I and J-II - Jhabua-II


As shown in Table 4, it was observed that gain in body weight among centres during all the three phases (from 0-4, 4-20, and 20-52 weeks of age) was found to he highly significant (p≤0.01), which may be due to differences in body weight, almost at all ages, between the two districts i.e. Jhabua-I (Meghnagar) and Jhabua-II (Jobat). No report was available on gains in body weights under field conditions in Kadaknath breed of poultry, however Gurung and Singh (1999) reported higher weekly gain in body weight (53±1.35 g) in Aseel birds from 0-52 weeks of age under field conditions. The North Baster district was significantly higher in weekly gain in body weight (67±3.79 g) from 20-52 weeks of age, which was in good agreement with the results reported in the present study from 20 -52 weeks of age in Kadaknath breed of poultry.

Sex-dimorphism (6-52 weeks of age)

The body weight of Kadaknath birds from 6 to 52 weeks of age in males and females pooled over both sexes are presented in Table 5 and Figure 2.


Table 5.   Overall average body weight (g) of Kadaknath birds : District Jhabua- I (Meghnagar) and District Jhabua II (Jobat)

Centre

Jhabua-I (Meghnagar)

Jhabua-II (Jobat)

Overall

t - value

 

Age in weeks/ months

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

N

Mean SE

N

6 weeks

Male

1964.64

669

1541.08

680

1752.86

1349

3.95**

Female

1803.18

1235

1450.94

1170

1632.06

2405

3.55**

Total

1862.86

1904

1490.75

1850

1681.81

3754

3.51**

8 weeks

Male

2765.95

669

2222.27

680

2494.11

1349

4.58**

Female

2554.25

1235

2311.88

1170

2433.07

2405

2.20*

Total

2623.57

1904

2161.49

1850

2392.53

3754

3.99**

10 weeks

Male

3596.59

669

3093.00

680

3344.80

1349

3.85**

Female

3314.66

1235

2872.63

1170

3093.65

2405

3.57**

Total

3414.02

1904

2972.11

1850

3193.07

3754

3.51**

12 weeks

Male

4506.69

669

4073.09

680

4294.89

1349

3.56**

Female

4225.18

1232

3752.91

1170

3994.05

2402

3.81**

Total

4334.17

1901

3882.42

1850

4113.30

3751

3.54**

14 weeks

Male

5547.71

669

5163.93

680

5355.55

1349

2.91**

Female

5185.70

1213

4853.04

1170

5024.37

2383

2.46*

Total

5324.75

1882

4972.45

1850

5143.60

3732

2.52*

16 weeks

Male

6598.26

655

6324.43

680

6216.35

1335

1.97*

Female

610 5.91

1162

6324.43

680

6114.92

2332

2.20*

Total

6434.86

1818

6103.01

1850

6263.94

3668

2.42*

18 weeks

Male

7928.61

647

7545.31

680

7736.96

1327

2.77**

Female

7366.33

1144

7094.51

1175

7235.42

2319

1.99*

Total

7585.22

1791

7243.71

1855

7414.47

3646

2.39*

20 weeks

Male

9269.25

633

8866.97

655

9068.11

1288

2.68**

Female

8647.70

1126

8275.28

1175

8466.49

2301

2.55*

Total

8866.18

1759

84504.29

1830

8685.54

3589

2.45*

6 months

Male

107710.36

500

10199.89

298

104810.12

798

3.46**

Female

9997.32

955

9516.63

810

9756.98

1765

3.34**

Total

10266.20

1455

9735.74

1108

10035.97

2563

3.41**

7 months

Male

12099.51

500

11288.80

278

11699.16

778

4.83**

Female

11136.83

955

10686.76

795

10916.79

1750

3.09**

Total

11465.99

1455

10865.75

1073

11205.87

2528

3.82**

8 months

Male

132510.32

490

12068.19

278

12659.25

768

7.18**

Female

11876.56

900

11297.26

795

11586.91

1695

4.27**

Total

12345.72

1390

11536.08

1073

11995.90

2463

5.08**

9 months

Male

142710.08

480

12829.51

263

13559.79

743

8.60**

Female

12647.57

900

11936.91

795

12287.24

1695

4.89**

Total

13196.44

1380

12195.77

1058

12766.11

2438

8.44**

10 months

Male

161410.12

460

136210.74

220

143810.43

680

14.46**

Female

13207.27

900

12527.88

775

12867.58

1675

4.65**

Total

13856.43

1360

12866.32

995

13436.38

2355

6.24**

11 months

Male

162910.66

430

14539.58

220

154110.12

650

10.37**

Female

13877.18

890

13068.32

775

13477.74

1665

5.67**

Total

14636.52

1320

13517.16

995

14156.84

2315

7.21**

12 months

Male

176511.74

406

16379.04

215

170110.39

621

7.53**

Female

14918.15

882

13988.20

775

14458.17

1657

6.05**

Total

15767.05

1288

14797.26

990

15347.16

2278

6.10**



 


Figure 2.
   Sex-dimorphism in body weights of Kadaknath birds ( 6 to 52 weeks)


The rate of increase in body weight from 6 to 52 weeks of age was higher  in males as compared to females (Figure 2), thus showing clear-cut sex dimorphism. No report under field conditions for sex dimorphism was available in Kadaknath breed of poultry; however, Singh et al (1999) conducted studies in Aseel breed of poultry from 0 to 21weeks of age. They reported higher body weights of males than females from 0 to 21 weeks of age, which is in agreement with the results reported in the present study for Kadaknath breed of poultry under field conditions.


References

Chatterjee R N, Ahlawat S P S, Yadav S P, Senani A, Kundu A, Jeyakumar S, Saha S 2002 Comparative growth performance of Nicobari fowl and their cost effectiveness under backyard and intensive system; Indian Journal of Poultry Science, 37 (1): 63-66.

 

Gurung B S and Singh M 1999 Network project on Survey of poultry (Aseel) genetic sciences- Terminal Report, 1996-1999.

 

Mishra A K 1983 MVSc and AH Thesis on Comparative studies on Growth and Haematology of Kadaknath and white leghorn chickens at different age groups; Jawaharlal Nehru Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, Jabalpur, India.

 

Rao G V and Thomas P C 1984 The breed characteristics of Kadaknath breed of indigenous (Desi) chicken; Avian Research, 68: 55-57.

 

Singh D P and Singh H P 1998 Black flesh chicken Kadaknath Poultry Punch; 4: 45-51.

 

Singh M, Singh U, Gurung B S and Gupta R K 1999a Sex dimorphism in growth of Aseel chickens; Indian Indian Journal of Poultry Science, 34: 387-388.

 

Singh V K, Mohan M, Verma S B, Mandal K G and Singh D P 1999b Analysis of body weights at different ages in pure and crossbred chicken; Indian Journal of Poultry Science, 34: 156-160.

 

Steel R G D and Torrie J H 1986 Principles and Procedures of Statistics- Biometrical approach, 2nd edn. MC Graw Hill Co. Kusha Ltd.



Received 14 June 2006; Accepted 27 June 2006; Published 6 September 2006

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