Indigenous goat as a potential genetic resource in Zimbabwe: A review
Keywords:Indigenous goat, Genetic resource, Selection, Crossbreeding, Zimbabwe
Indigenous goat breeds should be considered as promising genetic resource taking into account that goats comprise a considerable proportion of livestock and contribute substantially to the economic requirement of small scale farmers in Zimbabwe. They are tropically adapted and suited to low input range conditions, furthermore are reputed to give birth every year which may be considered unique characteristic of indigenous goats. In order to improve the average level of indigenous goat breeds for economic valued traits by genetic means the flocks must be subjected to selection for specific traits or combination of traits required. The prime aim of selection is to identify superior animals and use them for breeding so that the efficiency of the flock is improved. Another viable option is crossbreeding where it has been used has a constant feature associated with the introduction of improved goat type breeds into local goat population. Selection and crossbreeding have not been utilized to any extent to improve productivity of local goats and it is highly recommended that if these are to be successful they should be invariably accompanied improvements in management. There is little point in seeking genetic improvement in indigenous goat breeds due to selection or crossbreeding if management and nutrition are inadequate.little point in seeking genetic improvement in indigenous goat breeds due to selection or crossbreeding if management and nutrition are inadequate.
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