Full Length Research Paper
The study was conducted in 225 indigenous chicken keeping households between August 2020 and July 2021 in Machakos and Busia Counties. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect data on socio-economic factors, flock characteristics and management practices from targeted households. Overall, majority of respondents were male (82%) with formal education (87%). Agriculture was the main source of income for most households (71%). One third of the households accessed extension services (26%), market information (31%) and credit (33%). The extensive system of production was predominant (66%) with an average chicken flock size of 28 birds characterized by low chick survival rate (33%). There was selective adoption of management interventions, with 76% of households adopting feed supplementation and half (55%) adopted improved chicken housing. Lesser proportion of households practiced improved chick rearing (32%) and vaccinated their chicken (30%). Access to credit and literacy increased adoption of the management interventions (p<0.05). Adoption of management interventions such as improved chick rearing and housing increased chick survival and average chicken flock size significantly (p>0.05). The findings point to necessary targeted efforts such as improving farmer access to credit and provision of specifically packaged extension messages to meet needs of indigenous chicken farmers.
Key words: Indigenous chicken, management interventions, adoption, socioeconomic factors.
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