A "Different" thread on GENETICS........

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Junkmanme, Oct 18, 2009.

  1. Junkmanme

    Junkmanme Chillin' With My Peeps

    Hi ALL !

    I see many threads on the genetics of "color". Also threads on breeding "Meat-Birds". Threads are also seen regarding "egg-laying" ability.

    How about a thread HERE on the Genetics of disease-resistance, general health, longevity (even as may apply to long-term egg laying), and survivability/strength of the breed/cross? In simpler terms, what is known genetically about the "general vigor" of the chicken?

    Anyone interested?...OR know of information on genetics in THIS AREA of Inquiry? [​IMG]

    Whatta ya think?
    -Junkmanme- [​IMG]
  2. danielle82

    danielle82 A Good Egg

    Apr 27, 2009
    Tonasket Wa
    I think that is very cool. My Mom is actually a starting a flock like that. Not for selling, but for her own personal flock. Ones that will go broody occasionally, are winter hardy, lay eggs like no tomorrow and have some hybrid vigor haha. She just started it this year, so we will see how they are doing in about 3 or 4 years I guess lol. She is on 20 acres and they are mostly free range with going up at night. She got some Dominiques some Australorps, some Buff Orps and a few easter eggers, so in a few years it will be a crazy barnyard mix, but it will be a hardy mix that she handpicked for. I'm sure she will be very happy with her outcome
  3. racuda

    racuda Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2008
    North Carolina
    It sounds like you're describing "hybrid vigor". Hybrid vigor is what the mutts of the animal kingdom enjoy.
  4. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

    Jan 4, 2009
    Tempe, Arizona
    There is reasearch about disease resistance for Mareks and several other ailments. Birds with a B factor are either more or less resistance to Mareks (sorry, I don't recall which way it runs, Merck may list the information). And this trait tends to run in different breeds.

    There is also some research on other diseases and breeding for resistance, but I don't recall specifics.

    Hybrid vigor is not really carrying or not carrying specific genes, but rather infusing a line that may be too inbred with a new mix of genes.
  5. Krys109uk

    Krys109uk Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have been breeding for resistance to Mareks (or is it immunity? Had the discussion with a state poultry vet; always get confused).
    We have mareks in our birds & used to get a few young birds go down to it. I'd heard of people breeding for resistance & thought it sounded a good idea. Instead of killing the affected birds at first sign I left them until such point it was apparent they were going to die. At first birds which succumbed generally got worse until they couldn't walk to eat & had to be killed. Last year we didn't have any birds go down. This year I had one young blue jubilee pullet get the distinctive leg symptom. She deteriorated to the point where her affected leg wouldn't support her & did the characteristic sticking forward bit, but she could still get about....just. I was close to killing her but she still managed to get to the food to eat.....now, a few weeks on, she is supporting herself on her affected leg. Her foot doesn't work properly & curls up, but she lifts it up & puts it down a few times as if trying to get the foot to go down correctly & puts weight onto it though still favouring the non affected leg. I'm waiting to see how this progresses.
  6. 3KillerBs

    3KillerBs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 10, 2009
    North Carolina Sandhills
    Purely on theory, I would suspect that choosing older birds that are still vigorous and healthy would make a good start in assuring that any tendency to weakness was culled out by the passing of time.
  7. Krys109uk

    Krys109uk Chillin' With My Peeps

    Absolutely. Dr Clive Carefoot never used birds in their pullet or cockerel year as he wanted to be sure the birds were vigorous.
  8. Year of the Rooster

    Year of the Rooster Sebright Savvy

    Jun 27, 2008
    West Central Ohio
    This is very interesting. Krys, I remember reading somewhere that Sebrights are very susceptible to Mareks when they are young. Do you know why this is? Maybe their size or possible genetic history from when they were first developed? I'm assuming it is mostly SQ stock. None of my birds have had it and I received them from a hatchery. No vaccinations. Not to say that hatchery birds couldn't get Mareks, but since many breeders use line breeding to get the type/color they want in their birds maybe those birds are also passing down less resistance? (Hope that made sense.)
  9. gallorojo

    gallorojo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 15, 2009
    There are breeders who won't use a bird for breeding until it's 3rd or 4th year...this certainly selects for longevity, and it also allows one to evalulate the birds to select as breeders for a longer time frame..
  10. Krys109uk

    Krys109uk Chillin' With My Peeps

    I remember reading somewhere that Sebrights are very susceptible to Mareks when they are young. Do you know why this is?

    I read, ina British book, Sebrights & Silkies are particularly prone to Marek's . A friend of mine back in Wales gave up breeding Sebrights for that very reason. [​IMG] I don't know why it would be.​

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