Smallholder indigenous chicken (IC) production systems have been associated with low productivity thereby contributing to food insecurity and reduced livelihoods. Despite this scenario, smallholder IC producers have been harvesting and feeding termites supplementarily. This study determined the demographic characteristics that influence the use of termites as protein supplement for indigenous chicken by smallholder farmers and evaluated the nutrient composition of the most commonly used termite species. Household surveys were conducted to collect data on the socio-demographic characteristics of the farmers and on the use potential of termites as protein supplement to IC. Chi-square tests and logistic regression were used to analyze the collected data using R (version 4.0.2) statistical software. The commonly used Agoro termites (Macrotermes subhylanus) were harvested using trapping method, sun-dried and subjected to proximate analysis. A total of 72.7% of the farmers use termites as a protein supplement to feed IC. Chi square tests for association showed that occupation and education level of the respondents had significant association with termite usage (χ2 =7.319, p-value = 0.042) and (χ2 = 15.241, p-value = 0.004), respectively. Agoro termites were found to be rich in protein (37.7%) and calcium (38.625mg/100g) and could be used as protein supplement for IC.
Key words: Indigenous chicken, crude protein, supplement, Siaya, Kenya.
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