Wednesday, August 10, 2011 at 7:14 a.m.
For Ugandan women, backyard chicken farming is more then just a cute hobby -- it's a way of life. At least, they would like it to be. And with help from a new breed of highly productive chickens -- documented by researchers at Arizona State University -- it looks like the chicken business might start booming.
The hybrid birds known as Kuroiler chickens, have been genetically modified to grow larger, lay more eggs and have a lower mortality rate then the native species. Recent studies conducted
by ASU's Biodesign Institute researcher Jagdev Sharma showed that the Kuroilers placed in the Uganda homes almost doubled the weight of the native chickens, had a 84 percent survival rate and produced an average of 200 eggs per year. The native hens? They were only producing about 40 eggs per year.
That's a huge difference!
We wouldn't even keep our chickens around for just 40 eggs a year. (well maybe, but only because we have become a tad attached to our "ladies")
If these chickens catch on, it could be the first step to towards a better life for struggling villages. More eggs means more money, healthier chickens means healthier people. Combine the two and you have a better quality of life. Thanks chickens!
To read the full article in the ASU research magazine click here