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calendar   Wednesday - July 09, 2014

That’s All Clucked Up

Barnyard Blues For Rhode Island Red

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“I say, I say, I say, any of y’all got any of them Viagras??”



Roosters’ fertility problem affects US chicken supply, increases prices
The world’s largest chicken breeder has discovered that a key breed of rooster has a genetic issue that is reducing its fertility, adding to problems constraining U.S. poultry production and raising prices at a time when beef and pork prices are already at record highs.

The breed, Aviagen Group’s standard Ross male, is sire through its offspring to as much as 25 percent of the nation’s chickens raised for slaughter, said Aviagen spokeswoman Marla Robinson.

Sanderson Farms, the third-largest U.S. poultry producer and one of Aviagen’s largest customers, said it and Aviagen systematically ruled out other possible causes for a decline in fertility before determining a genetic issue was at the root of the problem.

The issue is hitting an industry that is already suffering from a short supply of breeder birds.

The U.S. Agriculture Department last month reduced its U.S. chicken production forecast for 2014, predicting only a 1 percent increase in poundage from 2013, well below the long-run annual average of 4 percent. The agency predicted 2015 production would be up only 2.6 percent.

Aviagen, owned privately by EW Group of Germany, provides breeding stock - hens and roosters - to Sanderson and other chicken producers, which then breed the birds and hatch their eggs to produce meat.
...
Aviagen sent a team of scientists to Sanderson last autumn to study the issue and has acknowledged that an undisclosed change it made to the breed’s genetics made the birds “very sensitive” to being overfed, he said.

“We fed him too much. He got fat. When he got big, he did not breed as much as he was intended to,” Cockrell said about the breed of rooster. “The fertilization went way down, and our hatch has been way down.”

Aviagen regularly tweaks genetics in birds to improve them, Cockrell added.
...
The chicken breeding company has replaced the breed suffering from fertility issues with a new breed, and is mating it with the same type of hens. It is too early to provide accurate projections for their productivity, but “results to date are favorable,” Robinson said.

One day a rooster came into our yard
And caught those little chickens
Right off their guard
They’re laying eggs now just like they used to
Ever since that rooster came into our yard
They’re laying eggs now just like they used to
Ever since that rooster came into our yard


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/09/2014 at 04:13 PM   
Filed Under: • AnimalsFine-DiningHumor •  
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Oh, and here's some kind of visitor flag counter thingy. Hey, all the cool blogs have one, so I should too. The Visitors Online thingy up at the top doesn't count anything, but it looks neat. It had better, since I paid actual money for it.
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