How important is genetic diversity?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by chicken farm, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. chicken farm

    chicken farm In the Brooder

    Jun 18, 2013
    I plan on buying 24 fertilised RIR eggs and putting them in the incubator, I want to keep my RIR’s pure but I‘m worried about genetic diversity when I breed them.

    Will genetic diversity be ok or will I need to buy more from another source.
  2. americaunus

    americaunus In the Brooder

    Oct 19, 2012
    What do you mean pure? If you get 24 RIR, are you planning on breeding? Then get a RIR rooster. Inbreeding, as far as I understand, isn't usually a problem with chickens. Are the 24 coming from the exact same rooster and hen? According to my chicken book, may cause infertility way down the road.
  3. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

    May 11, 2010
    Never hurts to buy a quality rooster from unrelated stock of the same breed. For example, if you purchased chicks from a breeder I would not buy a breeding rooster from the same breeder-unless they have unrelated stock. Also, I would not breed a rooster which came with flock of chicks purchased from a hatchery. Chances are these chicks are very closely related.

    To answer your question, yes, genetic diversity is important to maintain a healthy flock. Repeated inbreeding brings out unwanted mutations and lack of vigor.
  4. daneblackburn

    daneblackburn Chirping

    Jul 10, 2013
    In the dairy industry inbreeding is called line breeding if it works. If not it is inbreeding lol.
    1 person likes this.
  5. chicken farm

    chicken farm In the Brooder

    Jun 18, 2013
    I will buy my rooster(s) from a different source.
    I don’t want to breed RIR to sell but I want to have the option of selling.

    I want to breed my own chickens for the next 25+ years, so I’m not just talking about breeding 1-2 generations of RIR.
    I want to know how many roosters with different genetics I will need to get to stop inbreeding over such a long period?

    I plan on getting all chickens from the same source so the roosters will need to be the ones to provide the genetic diversity.

    I think 4 roosters should do it but I’m only guessing.

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