Poultry in Nepal: Present Scenario, Indigenous Breeds and Traits of Economic Importance


Livestock, including poultry is an integral part of the agricultural part of the agricultural production system in Nepal, providing draft power, manure and high value animal protein such as meat, milk and eggs for the human consumption that accounts for approximately 32% of agricultural GDP. Numerous people are involved in the production, slaughtering, processing, and trading of livestock and livestock products. Over 2 million households own cattle, and over 1.4 million households raise chickens.

Poultry farming is the practice of raising poultry, such as chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese, as a subcategory of animal husbandry, for the purpose of farming meat or eggs for food. More than 50 billion chickens are reared annually as a source of food, for both their meat and their eggs. Chickens farmed for meat are called broilers, whilst those farmed for eggs are called egg laying hens. After 12 months, the hen’s productivity will start to decline. This is when most commercial laying hens are slaughtered.

The growth rate of livestock sector is between 3.5 and 5 percent per annum which is more rapid that crop. It is anticipated that the contribution of livestock sector will reach 45 percent at the end of Agricultural perspective plan (1995 – 2015). The poultry enterprises is also an emerging economic sector, over 65,000 people are employed in commercial poultry farming. Thus the livestock sector can contribute significantly in rural poverty reduction and a tool for the rural employment generation.

The size of Nepal’s poultry market has grown by 30 percent in the last five years to Rs.20 billion now, and the GDP contribution of the sector stands at around 4 percent, according to the latest data compiled by poultry entrepreneurs. The per capita poultry meat consumption, however, is still low in Nepal, compared to other Asian countries, according to the Global Poultry Trends (GPT, 2010). The size of poultry population has significantly increased in the recent years and the present population of the laying hens is 7290875 (statistical data from MOAC , 2009/2010), the meat production from poultry 17551 metric tonnes (MOAC, 2009/2010), the net egg production from laying hens 6,34,60,000 (MOAC, 2009/2010). According to the Nepal egg producers’ association, poultry farming contributes around 4 percent to the GDP of the national economy.

Back home, though not much reflected in the per capita consumption data, it’s a reality that the poultry business is flourishing as never before in Nepal. This is a sector flourished with spontaneous private sector initiatives on investments, market exploration and expansion.

countries Human populations(million) poultry(kg/person/year) chicken only (kg/person/year)
china 1274 1362 10.5 10.9 7.9 8.6 9.0 9.1 9.4
India 1043 1215 1.1 1.7 1.8 2.0 2.2 2.2 2.2
Nepal 24 30 0.5 0.6

 Geographical distribution

Poultry production is carried all around Nepal. However production may vary within the agro – ecological ones and also within the politically separated geographical areas. The production directly depends on the market facilities, the climatic actors etc. According to the latest data collected the total number of laying hens and total egg production is highest in the hilly region of Nepal. Similarly the total number of laying hens and total egg production is more in the Central Development Region.

Agro-eco zones Development region
Mountains Laying Hens 127899 156450 4236 38502 37637
Hen Egg 8203 12516 249 2444 2204
Hills Laying Hens 521815 1959921 602620 353817 92690
Hen Egg 37599 196765 51814 27293 6386
Terai Laying Hens 767572 1688213 410028 504049 213196
Hen Egg 70270 174591 36779 45131 18825
Total Laying Hens 1417286 3804584 1016884 504049 343523
Hen Egg 116072 383873 88842 74869 27415

Source: MOAC STATISTICS (2010/11)

Literature review:

            Considering the important contribution of poultry sector in the national economy APP has given it third important priority in livestock development programme. There is a growing trend of poultry keeping in the highway sides and other roadside area. Currently there are 5 hatcheries in government sector and 75 hatcheries in private sector. Similarly there are 178 feed industries in private sector and 1 in government sector. There is a tremendous potential for poultry development in future. The future strategy may include steps and policy to marketing level. Poultry farmers have better economic opportunity. It also gives employment opportunity to women and rural people.

            There should be relation between poultry development and poultry health plan to improve public health hazard in the country. At present, there is little infrastructure to facilitate the slaughter and marketing of poultry birds. Though there are some cold storage and meat marketing scheme in private sector. Egg market is tied up with feed industry. There is lesser concern towards the environment protection. Therefore, it is advisable to have following strategies for betterment of poultry production, management and good bio security measures that improve the production in an environmentally friendly manner.

  • There must be clear cut vision about commercial as well as rural poultry development.
  • There is ample opportunity of exporting eggs and meat in autonomous region Tibet, China, Bangladesh and gulf countries.
  • The government should take initiatives for standardization for exporting. It will create confidence in rural farmers.
  •  There is an urgent need of poultry development board in which there must be participation of producers, hatchery owners, feed industrialist, medicine suppliers’, livestock experts, veterinarian, management experts and planners.
  •  There must be soft loan programme towards poor farmers and women group.
  • There must be workable mechanisms of quality control of chicks, feed and medicines.
  • There must be policy for infrastructure development such as slaughterhouse, cold storage etc. The processed product can fetch more price.
  • There should be bio-security policy along with environmentally friendly plan for farmers and entrepreneurs.

 Special packages is organized (training in poultry keeping, poultry processing) for group leader farmers in rural area and commercial farmers of poultry production area. Commercial poultry production is 50% and rest 50% occupies by backyard poultry production. Special focuses on diseases know how, treatment of poultry birds by technicians or experts would be done. Poultry extension programs through Department of Livestock Services (DLS), NGO and local government should be carried out in a coordinated way. There is Central Veterinary Laboratory(CVL) in kathmandu and National Avian Investigation Laboratory (NAL) in chitwan, which deal with the poultry disease diagnosis. The capacity of CVL and NAL shall be enhanced to cope with emerging poultry diseases. Research on production, processing and marketing of poultry products is essential to increase productivity and to maintain good environment. The role of private sector is limited to management and processing of poultry meat. These municipalities should develop infrastructure in suitable places. Experts of DLS and National Agriculture Research Council (NARC) shall provide clean meat and sausage production training. There must be some sort of training on marketing component, which should be explored. The bio-security measures should be worked out and published for general public and stakeholders.

National Scenario:

The poultry sector that contributes 4% in GDP has seen an encouraging growth with total investment amounting to NRs. 24 billion rupees over the period. The surge in the scope and the size of the business is due mainly to opening of big poultry farms, hatcheries and feed industries in poultry hub of Chitwan and other emerging new markets. According to Dr. Tilchandra Bhattarai, a poultry researcher “Lower cost coupled with nutritional value of poultry products and their growing popularity among consumers has unleashed a huge potential for business expansion across the country. This is why there is an upward trend in opening new farms and expands existing ones.”

Traditionally, poultry farming is considered as a lower call business. However, in the recent years the commercial poultry farming is emerging as a viable economical enterprise. It is estimated that over 1594,400 households are rearing poultry birds (CBS, 2010). Since last decades, commercial poultry farming for meat and eggs is being quite popular especially around the urban centres. The poultry population is growing by 5% each year and estimated production of egg for local is 40 and 280 for pure bred hen. There are about 82 hatcheries producing broiler and layers chicken to the commercial poultry farmers. The major commercial breeds are Cobb 100, Cobb 500, Vencobb 100, Kashila, Lohmann, H & N, Hyline, Marshall, and Rose 308.

Production 2006/07 2007/08 2008/09 2009/10 2010/11
Meat production 147031 151209 156627 162213 167868
Chicken 16035 16453 16992 17066 17923


Problems associated with poultry production in Nepal:

            Poultry industry is an emerging industry in Nepal. This can be approved by the increase in the poultry production and the preference of consumers in adopting poultry products. However these poultry products and the industry itself are not satisfactory in global context. There are many obstacles that hinder the improved production of poultry to meet the national demand. The major reasons for this are listed below.

Lack of modern laboratories regarding the disease diagnosis:

            The lack of modern laboratory for diagnosing diseases in Chicken and checking the quality of feed and meat are some of the major setbacks facing poultry industry in Nepal. This has created unfavourable business environment for poultry farmers as well as sellers. In comparison to mutton and buffalo meat, there are fewer chances for chicken meat to get contaminated, so proper inspection and construction of storage laboratories could contribute to minimizing the diseases in Chickens.

Disproportionate and uncertain market price of Chicken produce, the poor marketing system:

            The poor marketing system is the main problem. This is mainly due to less coordination among the farmers, integrators, and middlemen and government agencies. Lack of processing information is the causes of poor marketing performance. Besides these poor transportation facilities are the major hurdles in industrial development of the industry.

            Chicken prices are disproportionate to production cost, the reason appears to be strong demand and a fall in supply. Over the last year, the price of chicken was increased by >50%, and disproportionate increase does not seem warranted and cannot be determined, merely by weighing production costs against sale prices. If the labour costs had risen significantly, the difference would have shown up, for example, in the cost incurred in cutting up the chicken and preparing it for consumption. But live chicken last year cost up to NRs.110/kg, while, this year it is around NRs.175/kg, which means the increase is independent of labour costs. “The price of chicken has skyrocketed because there has been a sharp fall in the volume of chicken produced by the poultry farms in the country,” says Tika Ram Pokhrel, President of the Nepal Poultry Entrepreneurs Forum (NPEF), an umbrella organization of poultry producers. And that decrease was the result of the avian influenza(Bird flu) rearing its ugly head in different district in different times. A poultry farmer at kaushaltar, Kathmandu had a loss of about NRs.15 lacs in the month of Falgun this year.

Poor management and other support facilities:

            The support facilities such as veterinary services, concentrated feeds, breeding and others are limited and confined in accessible areas only. The management in intensive poultry-keeping is to be considered more. There must be strict hygiene control: e.g. vaccination against diseases like Ranikhet, Gumboro, etc. , foot dips at the door, disinfecting the house for new chickens. There must be enough space for each bird and sufficient waterers, feeders, nest boxes and perches. If day-old chicks are brought, they must be kept warm and fed a correct diet.

            Production and money records are needed. Chickens not producing well (Eggs or meat) must be culled (sold or killed) quickly. There is lack of proper record keeping enlisting the types of breeds and their numbers being imported. The major problems regarding the minimal production of the poultry farming can be understood only when there is proper record keeping and the necessary steps can be followed out.

Shrinking feed resources and lack of quality feed ingredients:

            Most farmers believe the major problem as the unavailability of fresh and healthy chicks. There was wide variation in FCR which is mainly due to low quality feed. The quality of poultry products is also not satisfactory. Perhaps feed supply or quality failed; there was no more cash to buy feed; there was no transport. Laying chickens will stop producing if feed quality changes or if they have to go without feed or water for just 24 hours. Chickens eat similar food to people, so if food is short, intensive poultry may be in competition with people. This inevitably will lead to supply problem. The natural community lands and forests resources cultivation, forestation, community forestry and other use. Thus causing extreme feed shortage and farmers has compelled to quit farming of large herds of livestock.

Wrong types of chicken and indiscriminate breeding practices:

The chickens may have come originally from other country. They may only be able to produce well in a very different type of housing, or under a different management system. Under village conditions, local chickens are often the most reliable and profitable. There are no well managed breeding practices regarding the production of the poultry in demand. The native breeds are diminishing severely. Production and improvement of these native breeds may result better production.

Inaccurate budgeting

The farmers or project members need to work out accurately, before beginning, exactly how much food growing chickens eat. Other costs – medicines, vaccines, equipment – must be added. With layers it will be six months before the first eggs are laid; in the meantime there will be no income.

Lack of proper government policies:

There is no clear policy for livestock development and the livestock sector development is not the first priority of the government. There is a lack of insurance of the poultry produced. Along with these, production uncertainty discourages the farmer in establishing large scale poultry production. Even though the production is based on a small scale mostly in the hilly and Himalayan regions, the production is just sufficient to fulfil the farmers’ domestic needs. There should be proper government policies regarding the fixed market value of the product. Farmers and their products should be insured.

Unawareness of the farmers and follow of conventional system:

Common believes towards livestock production system that livestock thrives on grazing and crop by-products limited the cultivation of quality forage crops and adequate feeding. Farmers are not aware about the various types of improved management practices, the development of new technologies. In other words, the farmers themselves are practising traditional farming system. This might lead to production but only it meets the farmers’ basic needs. There is lack of technical knowledge on production, processing and slaughtering of poultry.

Small farm holding and secondary priority of the farmers and subsistence production of poultry:

Subsistence Nepalese farming is the major limitations to commercial livestock development. Rearing few heads of animals to fulfil the basic need has hindered the surplus production of livestock products. Mostly the typical societies of Nepal do not rear poultry as they feel it unfit regarding their socio-cultural aspects. Those rearing poultry also give more priority to raise cattle, buffaloes. Even if some of the farmers practice poultry farming they may not have sufficient land to rear poultry commercially. This means that scattered and fragmented land holding to the farmers is the major obstacle in commercial poultry production. The average farm size is about 0.9 ha in which farmers have to grow almost all crops for their subsistence, leaving less and/or land for forage cultivation. Too small size of land holding discouraged the rearing of large herds of less productive animal.

Danger of various known and unknown disease and poor bio-security measures:

The poor bio-security, ineffective preventive measures, inefficient disease diagnosis and treatments are other problems. The problem of financial difficulties is the other major problems of the farmers associated with poultry farming in Nepal. The high interest rate and difficult to get bank loan are the problems.

            Poultry diseases are the major cause for undeveloped poultry farming. The farmers are not aware regarding various diseases and the way to overcome it. The major disease revealed is Infectious Brussels disease, Newcastle disease, mycoplasmosis, coccidiosis etc. Vaccination practices and management practises lack in these cases. This results in poor production.

Development of urban centralized farms:

Growth of urban centred commercialized farming systems has lead to the decreased production in the rural areas. It hampers the production system of the middle class farmers who cannot afford the state-of-art technologies.

Lack of manpower:

Due to the lack of adequate manpower peoples of the northern belt are abandoning to rear large herds of animals. Lastly to increase the per capita consumption of eggs and meat up to the level of world average, it is required to develop the sustainable strategy, which should follow by all sectors of production, distribution, marketing as well as the government authority.

Breeds of poultry (Gallus domesticus)

The major commercial breeds are Cobb 100, Cobb 500, Kashila, Lohmann, H & N, Hyline, Marshall, and Rose308.

Three types of poultry breeds are raised in Nepal:

  • Local breed: Shakini, Ghanti khuile, Pwankh Ulte.
  • Pure breed, and
  • Synthetic breed.

The types and description of local breed:

The native breeds of poultry are hardy in nature, suitable for scavenging and are dual purpose, with high meat quality. Following types of native poultry breeds are found in Nepal.


Shakini is the principal chicken breed in the country. They are hardy and dual purpose suitable for meat (reputed for delicious meat) and eggs. They are found throughout the country. They have been characterized on phenotypic level. They are normal and are not at risk from conservation point of view. The local shakini breed of poultry is small in body size, different feather colour, hardy in nature. The egg production capacity is 70-80/ year. The average adult body weight is 1.5-2.0kg.

Ghanti Khuile:

Ghanti khuile chicken is hardy and dual purpose suitable for meat and eggs. They are hardy and good for scavenging condition. They are found throughout the country. Their population is very low and needs conservation attention. The Ghanti Khuile breed of poultry is a typical bird with few feathers in neck, different feather color, hardy in nature, noted for delicacy of meat. The egg production capacity is 60-80/year. The average adult body weight of male is 1.6 and female is 1.30 kg.

Pwankh Ulte (Dumse)

Dumse chicken is hardy and dual purpose suitable for meat and eggs. They have ruffled feathers. They are found throughout the country in a small number. They are rarely found and need immediate conservation attention. The Pwankh Ulte breed of poultry is a typical bird with outward growth of feathers. The average adult body weight of male is 1.0 kg and female is 0.9kg.

Description of exotic poultry breeds:

  • New Hampshire: It is an American breed, brown in colour. The average body weight of adult male is 3.8kg and female is 2.9kg. The egg production potentiality is 200eggs/year. At present the breeds are raised at Brooder Farm, Banke, Livestock Development Farm, Pokhara, Agriculture Centre, Khulmaltar, Agriculture Research Centre, Tarahara and Parwanipur.
  • Austrolorp: The breed is developed in Australia. The breed is black in colour. The average body weight of adult male is 3.8kg and female is 2.9 kg. The egg production potentiality is 200eggs/year. At present the breeds are raised at NARC research centre, Khumaltar, Tarahara and Parwanipur.
  • Giri Raja: It was introduced and tested by Pakhribas Agriculture Centre. At present the breeds are raised at NARC Research Centres, Pakhribas.


Important economic traits:

A poultry farmer needs to keep a few important factors in view, if he has to get the maximum benefit from them. These factors are described in the following pages.

  • Egg production:

            Egg production is the most important economic trait in chickens. A modern layer starts laying around 20 weeks of age and continues till it dies. Egg production drops sharply below the economic level after the first laying cycle. Commercial layers therefore are rarely maintained after first laying cycle i.e. after 72 weeks of age. Peak production is reached about 5 to 6 weeks after the first egg is laid, stays only for a few weeks after which it gradually declines.

            The number of eggs a hen will lay during a laying cycle depends upon

  1. Age when it sexually matures,
  2. The length of laying cycle (persistency),
  3. The rate of egg production(intensity of lay),
  4. Number of pauses during which no egg is laid,
  5. Number and duration of broody periods.

            A pullet is sexually mature when she lays her first egg. The sooner it starts to lay more the number of eggs are likely to be produced. Light breeds like Leghorn mature about a month earlier than heavy breeds. Probably many genes are involved in its inheritance and some of these are sex linked. The use of early maturing strains as sire line in the production of commercial crosses will be desirable to obtain early maturing commercial chicks. Poor nutrition and sub optimal management retard the onset of egg production. Date or season of hatch is also important. Chicks hatched during March to May come into production earlier than those hatched in other months. It is easier to improve the age at the sexual maturity as it is moderately heritable. Too early maturity may not be desirable in commercial laying flocks as it affects egg weight.

            Persistency refers to the onset of moulting at the end of the laying cycle. A hen which moults late or continues to lay during the moulting period is a good layer. Persistency is not important at present as modern commercial inherited trait and can be improved by appropriate selection.

            The intensity or rate of egg production is measured by the number of eggs laid by a hen during a standard time interval or by the percentage of eggs laid during a variable time interval. The number of eggs laid by a bird is determined by the nature of its egg cycle i.e. the number of eggs laid without a break. This is called a clutch. The clutch size varies from one egg to a fairly large number of eggs. After each clutch there is an interval of one to several days. Clutch size is longer and inter-clutch interval shorter for the good layers. Clutch size is related to ovipositing. The time interval between consecutive ovipositing are small, clutch sizes are big. Clutch size is moderately heritable while that of rate of lay is lowly heritable.

            Broodiness is the condition in which females stop laying and show the tendency for nesting. It is an ideal character for the propagation of species in wild conditions, but highly undesirable for domesticated species for economic purpose. Broodiness has been completely eliminated from modern elite layers by continuous selection. Heavy breeds like Rhode Island Red, Australorps and White Rocks still show varying amounts of broodiness. Broodiness is determined by complementary genes; also it has a sex-linked basis.

            Some hens lay well for some time and then stop laying for a few days. When the inter-clutch period exceeds seven days it is called a pause. Winter pause is a problem of temperate countries but not in tropical countries like India. However, pauses are more common in summer or immediately thereafter due to hot and humid climates. Stress and disease of various kinds induce pauses. It has also a genetic basis.

            Egg production is measured either as the number of eggs or rate of lay or is expressed as hen housed, hen day and survivor’s production. Hen housed egg number is calculated in a similar manner but by obtaining the bird numbers on the basis of functional days basis. Hen housed egg production does not take mortality into account, whereas hen day egg production takes into consideration the mortality by accounting for the number of days performed by the birds that died. Survivor’s egg production refers to the average number of eggs laid by each survivor and is calculated by dividing the total number of eggs laid by survivors by the number of surviving birds. Hen housed production provides a better picture about the economic production performance of a flock than the other two means.

  • Egg weight:

            Egg weight or egg size being a highly heritable trait can be improved by selection. The first egg laid is usually smallest and is about 75% of the maximum weight that can be reached. Final egg weight is influenced by age at puberty, body weight and rate of lay. Birds which mature earlier and those with high production potential tend to lay smaller eggs. Egg weight is high for heavy breeds than light breeds. Other factors affecting egg size are nutrition, season and disease conditions. Birds housed in cages may lay larger eggs than those housed on floor. Egg weight may be influenced either by maternal or sex linked effect depending upon the strain.

  • Egg quality:

            External quality of the egg is judged from its color, shape, texture and breaking strength (or shell thickness). The internal quality is assessed from the quality of albumen, yolk and the presence or absence of blood and meat spots. Most of the egg-quality traits, whether exterior or interior, are highly heritable and respond to selection quickly.

            White and brown are the most common egg colours. Tinted eggs are sometimes discriminated against white varieties, but it fetches a premium price and is very popular in this country as it resembles the eggs from indigenous chickens. Colour does not make any difference in the nutritive value. As egg colour is a characteristic of a breed, the breeding material has to be different depending upon the preference of the shell colour.

            Hens that lay rough or poorly textured eggs with thin shells are usually not selected. Breaking strength is measured by shell thickness. It should be fairly high in commercial eggs as they are likely to be transported over long distances. It is an inherited trait, however, feeding and environment also affects it. Shell thickness decreases in summer months and in some diseased conditions. Since calcium carbonate is the essential component of egg shell, it should be available to birds in required quantity for obtaining eggs with better shells. Utilization of calcium depends upon proper calcium- phosphorus ratio and availability of Vitamin D3+.

            Thick albumen is preferred to thin albumen, so also eggs with high proportion of yolk. Albumen quality can be judged by either measuring the height of thick albumen or by determining Haugh unit. Yolk quality is determined by yolk index. Good layers usually lay eggs with more of thin albumen than thick albumen. Small eggs comparatively have more yolk than large eggs. Variation is noticed among strains, among families and individuals within a family for blood and meat-spots. Although the nutritive value is not affected by blood and meat-spots their presence is not pleasing. Hence incidence of blood and meat spots should be reduced to the minimum by appropriate selection.

  • Body size and conformation:

            Body size is usually measured by weighing the birds. Large body weight is very important in broilers. Small or intermediate body weight is preferred in layers. Optimum body size is very essential in laying chickens to obtain eggs of satisfactory size. Body weight at all ages is highly heritable and can be improved by simple mass selection. Conformation refers to body proportions and is more important if broilers are not sold as whole birds. Conformation is determined both by bone structure and fleshing.

  • Growth:

Rapid juvenile growth is very essential in meat-type birds. It helps to reduce the cost of production by saving labour, time and feed. Growth rate is fairly high up to approximately 12 weeks of age in broilers, 5 weeks of age in quails and 16 weeks of age in turkeys after which it slows down. Through the application of genetic principles and modern methods of feeding and management it has been possible to develop rapid growing broilers which at 7-8 weeks weigh almost the same as 12 week old broilers weighed about 20 years ago. This has reduced the marketing age and in most cases they are now sold as early as 6 weeks. Growth rate is moderate to highly heritable and can be improved easily by simple mass selection.

  • Feed efficiency:

            Feed efficiency is a ratio of feed consumption to weight gain in broilers. Feed efficiency in broilers has improved considerably in recent years as a correlated response to high growth rate. Better understanding about the nutritional requirements and formulation of high energy rations have also contributed significantly for improving feed efficiency.

            Feed efficiency although moderately heritable is laborious to measure. Most of the improvement in feed efficiency in commercial ck has been achieved as a correlated response to selection for high growth rate or egg production. Feed efficiency in layers is measured either as amount of feed consumed in kg/dozen eggs or as amount of feed consumed in kg/kg egg mass. Small bodied birds are most efficient for egg production as they consume less feed. Selection for high egg production improves efficiency through increase in egg mass output.

  • Fertility and hatchability

Fertility and hatchability for a flock are expressed as percentage in relation to total eggs set. Hatchability can also be expressed in percentage as a production of fertile eggs set. Breeds, strains, family as well as individuals within a family differ with respect to fertility and hatchability. Inbreeding depresses those while outbreeding increases. Age of birds , season , nutritional status of flock, diseases and management conditions affect both fertility and hatchability.

            To improve fertility in a flock the ratio of males to females should be kept optimum. This ratio should be narrow for heavy breeds than light breeds. Artificial insemination and mating in single sire pens is advocated when infertility is due to preferential mating or social order among the males, respectively. Flocks in high rate of lay have better fertility and hatchability than poor producing flocks.

            Size and shape of the eggs, and conditions of egg shell are important for hatchability. Very large or very small eggs do not hatch well. Eggs having abnormal shapes show low hatchability. Condition and duration of storage of eggs prior to incubation as well as incubator and hatcher environment affect hatchability.

            Breeder flocks need special attention. Their rations should be fortified with minerals and vitamins for obtaining better fertility and hatchability. Very high or low temperature in the breeding house affect fertility and hence hatchability.

            Both fertility and hatchability are lowly heritable traits but can be improved by appropriate breeding methods. Rejection of males on the basis of test mating prior to taking hatches improves fertility.

  • Heritability of certain traits:

The ability of quantitative characters to be transmitted from parent to offspring is known as heritability. When heritability is high, progeny improvement is rapid and vice-versa. However in spite of an apparent

Low heritability of a trait significant improvement can be made in that trait by using appropriate selection techniques.

Heritability% of certain quantitative traits

CharactersHeritability% Egg weight55Actual body weight558 week broiler weight45Egg shape40Breast fleshing30Egg production25Age at sexual maturity25Body depth25Shell thickness25Albumin quality25Keel length40Hatchability of fertile eggs15Blood spots15Adult liveability10Chick liveability05Fertility05


            The indigenous breeds have always been of great importance for genetic improvement as most of the economic traits have been found on them that can better be improved by well established genetic engineering. The well distribution system of poultry has been found in all the development regions can make it easy for a decentralized improvement programme.

            The production of poultry has not been well sufficient to fulfil the national demand, production by small holders being a major limiting factor. Although the production seems to be quite efficient regarding their raising system, proper scientific production system can improve the economic traits of poultry. Production of high quality forages and the feed ingredients can play supportive role to improve the total production besides planned and systematic genetic engineering tools. The productive traits are mostly affected by environmental factors so allocation of developed breeds as per the environment would play utmost role in optimizing the total production. The products of poultry (egg and meat) have always been playing in uplifting the life standard of small holders and total GDP of the country. The extension of subsistence type of raising system to scientific allocation with proper government support would be helpful in producing optimum results with the resource available.


  • ABAIS., 1997. Annual report – 1996-97:  animal breeding and artificial insemination section, Department of livestock services, P.O.BOX 8814, Kathmandu, Nepal .
  • ABD,1997. Annual technical report of animal breeding division, 1996/97. Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC), Khumaltar, lalitpur, Kathmandu , Nepal
  • Customs Department,1995. Customs Records for 1994/95. Department of Customs, Government of Nepal.
  • Floyd, C.N. , Harding, A.H. , Poudel, K.C. Rasali , D.P. Subedi, K.D. & Subedi , P.P.(1999). The adoption and associated impact of Technologies in the western hills of Nepal.
  • Poultry Production, K.A. Singh.
  • Statistical Information on Nepalese Agriculture ,2010/11. Ministry of Agriculture & Co-operatives (MOAC, NG).

Traits of Economic Importance in Polutry

46 thoughts on “Poultry in Nepal: Present Scenario, Indigenous Breeds and Traits of Economic Importance

  1. Bijesh Biju, my name is Ramchhabila Das residing in jankpur, nepal but i am presently in Riyadh Saudi Arabia. can you give me information where can i buy a white leghorn chicks and laying mass feeds cause i an to produce eggs in our farm but I don’t have knowledge. Can you give me information where to buy these chicks and feeds and also a training center for entrepreneur who wants to start a business of producing eggs and meat consumption. my email is ramchhabiladas@gmail.com.


  2. Sir.. Where can i find the training centre for the training so that i can open the poultry farm in kathmandu ?? I am new in this field and i don’t know where to go or what to do ? So it will be a great help if u kindly guide me .. Thankyou


  3. Hello Mr. Bijesh!
    Very informative article I must say. Can you also share the scenario of the prevalent caging systems ? Are there any government regulations (like it is banned in Bhutan). How beneficial it is to do cages rather than deep litter system ?


  4. thanks for the suggestions sir!
    actually my family’s business is to chicks supply over pkr valley. so let me call it as my inspiration for research. I am analysing the market but for data collection people does not provide me information which is creating me in trouble.


    1. actually I already put my concerns with professor and also found that no one had done research on such topic


    2. So, you find the research gap. Now, I suggest you to find literatures that are related to your research topics. I believe there are lots of similar researches that has been conducted in some other parts of country or world. You can use that for your research as literature reviews. Questionnaires should be designed, refined, pretested and again refined. Process should be continued unless it is can address the research interest. It is not “an hour” process. So, I suggest to sit with your professor and design survey.


  5. actually sir , I am going to write the report and the topic is- ” market analysis of chicks supply in pokhara” for the research methodology I am going to prepare few questions for suppliers. sir would you please suggest me what kind of questions would be favourable?
    thank you!


    1. Doing research is really challenging and interesting jobs. First you need to review literatures and find the research gap. I assume, you are pretty much familiar with the issues of poultry suppliers in Pokhara. So, It will be easier for you to identify the issues. Questionnaires are designed based on literature review, your objectives and research interest. So, better you can consult with your professor or advisor. My perceptions may not meet your research objectives and research interest. So, I suggest you to find literatures before designing survey.


  6. hello sir!
    thanks for the information
    I m a bba student n I m doing research in poultry farming in Nepal
    and going to prepare report so would you please suggest me valuable ideas for report writing


    1. Hello Deepa,
      Thank you for the queries. Would you please mention what specific information you need? It will be easier for me to guide you through the process or provide suggestion.

      Bijesh Mishra.


  7. helloo i m planning to do poulatry farm ..so i want to traning first and i have no idea yet where to go for traning ..Bijes sir can i get any idea


  8. Hi!
    I am planning to start a layer farming in Janakpur region as the demands of egg are not matching the supplies in that region. For this, I have gone through various layer farming site and seen the unmanaged way of layer farming. So, my queries are:
    1. How can i get proper breed, which lay at least 200 eggs?
    2. Where can I buy the A shape poultry cage with automatic feeders and waterers?
    3. What size of area should i acquire to start a farm with 5000 pullets?
    4. Last but not the least, how can i get your suggestion as i am not from this field?

    Please inform me via mail on jha.indrajeet@gmail.com


    1. Hi, Thank you for queries!
      Answering your questions:
      1 & 2: you can consult hatchery near by you. If they are not available near you, chitwan could be proper place for you. About feeding and watering tray, either you can buy or prepare yourself using local resources such as bamboo, plastic pipes. etc.
      3. It depends upon what type of farming–intensive, semi-intensive, cage farming or extensive farming–you are planning for. Generally, 60 sq.inch is required for 18 week onward chicken.
      4. contact me through this blog or contact via email.


  9. Very informative article !! Ver helpful for starter like us. Bijesh I would like to meet and discuss further on this. I will highly appreciate if you get in touch through email.


  10. I would like to meet u in person if possible .i would be grateful to u if u could leave your cell no or email address.i wanna start a new poultry farm in kathmandu ..
    Many thanks …….

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hi Bijesh ji, Your article is really interesting for fresh start ups. Actually i m planning to start poultry farming business but not much ideas. I m engaged in other profession.Can i meet you in Kathmandu pls


  12. Brijesh Jiu, read yr article regarding poultry in Nepal. Quite informative & inspirational for the starter.I really admire yr efforts. Is it possible to meet u ? ,pls ack. Thanks. Ajit

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hey there! Quick question that’s completely off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?

    My website looks weird when browsing from my iphone.
    I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to
    correct this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share.


  14. Thanks for the information regarding native chicken breeds of Nepal.
    But you had mention just a few paragraphs regarding native breeds. There are lots of things you should add; 1. Identification method 2. Latin name 3. Altitude suitable for the breeds Etc


    1. Dear Ajaya,
      Thank you for the suggestion. If you have additional information please feel free to make comment and share with me. I will be pleased to hear from you. Indeed, adding few information gradually help to improve quality of articles and will make it complete.


  15. I wanna say thanks for publicing this correct information. Keep up this great job. I’ll subscribe to your weblog also. thanks!


  16. Thank you for your compliment. Before adopting different breeds of poultry or any livestock you have to study feasibility of that breed to adopt in your locality or suitability of those breeds in your climatic condition. All breeds might not be adoptable in your locality.
    About your question, you can get those breeds in your local market or district market. You can get more information about those breeds from District Agriculture Development Office (DADO) in your district or nearby Livestock Service Office. Cost may vary according to market access and availability of raw materials for construction, feeds etc.
    About light, There is a gland behind the eyes of birds called a pituitary gland. When stimulated by light this produces a hormone that is carried via the bloodstream to the ovary which sets egg production in motion. It is therefore possible to give some artificial light to laying birds to ‘trick’ their bodies into continuing to lay into the darker months.
    And temperature should be maintained in the poultry shed.


  17. It’s a great service to mankind you are doing. I am a totally disable unemployed person and want to earn by opening a poultry farm. As you mention, new breed new hampshire, austrolope and giri raj are good, but where to find it and does it need light shade at night? How much cost of maintinence will be accrued. Please inform me by email.


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