Authors: Fayeye, T. R. and Owoeye, M. F.
Data on 400 chickens was used to estimate the correlation between body weight (BWT) and morphometric traits in young and adult Isa brown and Fulani ecotype chickens. Shank length had the highest correlation with BWT in young birds of both genotypes (0.87-0.92). All the morphometric traits measured in young birds were significantly (P<0.05) correlated with BWT except for wing length in Isa Brown. There was significant (P<0.05) correlation between BWT and each of the morphometric traits considered in adult female chickens while most of the estimates obtained for male birds were not significant (P>0.05). Comb length, neck length and breast length had better correlation with BWT than other morphometric traits in Isa brown (0.88- 0.95), while beak length, neck length and toe length had better correlation with BWT in Fulani ecotype chicken (0.69-0.74). Negative correlation (P<0.05) was obtained between BWT and beak lenght (-0.78) in adult Isa brown and between BWT and shank lenght (-0.35) in adult male chickens. The present study showed that both Isa brown and Fulani ecotype chickens can be adequately characterised using morphometric indices. The study further revealed that morphometric indices like comb length, neck length and thigh length can be used to predict the BWT of young and adult Isa Brown and Fulani ecotype chickens. The differences between sex in the estimates of correlation and the negative estimate between BWT and beak-length in adult chickens require further investigation as these may underline some mechanisms for adaptation in adult chickens.
Keywords: Adaptation, body weight, correlation, Fulani ecotype, morphometric
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