Abstract— The aim of this study was to characterize indigenous chicken eggs and create an inventory that will set a base for designing breeding programs to improve egg quality traits. 338 eggs of mixed breeds of indigenous chickens from small scale farmers in Lusaka were collected and used in this study. A number of external and internal traits were measured manually. The eggs had a weight of 49±0.44g with a length of 54.55mm and 40.31mm wide. Other traits measured included egg shell weight and length, with the egg shell accounting for 12.78% of the total weight of the egg. The egg albumin and egg yolk weighed 26.21g and 16.55g respectively. The egg weight positively correlated with all the traits studied. A principal component analysis on these traits extracted three principal components that accounted 75.80%. The diversity shown by these eggs shows a huge potential for improvements of egg quality characteristics through proper selection and breeding.
Keywords— egg quality, indigenous chickens, egg shape index, principal component analysis, Lusaka.
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