Chicken health and management in Ethiopia: A guide for farmers and development agents

Blog post

Chicken production is an important agricultural activity in Ethiopia. Most farming households, and many others, keep at least a few chickens, which can play a key role in poverty alleviation, nutrition and food security. In addition, as chicken husbandry is mostly carried out by women and children, it can play a key role in household labour productivity and gender empowerment.

Increased production of chickens to improve food security is a major policy goal in Ethiopia and, although still accounting for a small proportion of total production, there is increasing semi-intensive and intensive production, often using introduced commercial and hybrid chickens housed in flocks of 50–1,000 birds.

Despite the long history of chicken production in Ethiopia, and many recent advances, there remain important constraints to productivity. These include the genetic resources available, the availability and quality of feed, limitations within the supply chain, including opportunities for marketing, and the high prevalence of disease and predation.

guide from the Chicken Health for Development project provides an overview of chicken production and management in Ethiopia and of the health issues that impact productivity. It offers locally-specific information to improve chicken management and health across all scales of production. We hope that this guide assists those people responsible for chicken production in Ethiopia, including farmers, development agents and veterinarians, and enables enhanced productivity of the chickens and well-being for the people who rely on them.

The project was funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Scottish Government.

Download the guide: Habte, T., Amare, A., Bettridge, J., Collins, M., Christley, R. and Wigley, P. 2017. Guide to chicken health and management in Ethiopia: For farmers and development agents. ILRI Manual 25. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.

About the chicken health for development project

See related research on chickens in Ethiopia in the African Chicken Genetic Gains project