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EGS-ABG : European Graduate School in Animal Breeding and Genetics

Genetic evaluation of feed efficiency of tropical adapted chicken in Sub-Saharan Africa

Nr : 14-AU-WU

Topic : Genetic evaluation of feed efficiency of tropical adapted chicken in Sub-Saharan Africa

Host Institutions :
Aarhus University (Denmark)
Wageningen University (The Netherlands)

Summary :
In Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), the majority of the rural and peri-urban people are poor and nutritionally insecure with little or no access to animal source foods. Keeping poultry is the most basic form of livestock keeping for many poor households it plays significant gender roles to women, widows and orphaned children in terms of food security and nutrition, cash income and savings. A large research project ?African Poultry Genetic Gains (APGG): A platform for testing, delivering, and continuously improving tropically-adapted chickens for productivity growth in Sub-Saharan Africa? coordinated by ILRI will start in 2015. This PhD project will be a part of this large project and focus on assessing the feed efficiency (FE) of a minimum of two tropically adapted chicken lines, which will be tested on-station and on-farm in Nigeria, Tanzania and Ethiopia. Phenotypes on feed intake and production traits will be collected both on-station and on-farm. The objective of the PhD project will be 1) Estimate different parameters reflecting feed efficiency, e.g. RFI, FCR 2) Estimate genetic variation and correlation between FE, growth and egg production 3) Explore the differences between the exotic and the indigenous breed and possibly estimate GxE interactions and 4) Investigate the effect of including FE in the breeding goal, and estimate economic values.

The PhD candidate will spend approx. 6 months at ILRI, Addis Ababa, working with the APGG project group.

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