Popular Science Article
Farm animal breeding of genetic resources for young farmers in Taiwan
Taiwan Livestock Research Institute, Tainan, Taiwan
- Acta Sci. Pol. Zootechnica, 20(3), 2021, 97‒104
- DOI: 10.21005/asp.2021.20.3.13
Abstract. The agricultural employed population of the year 2020 in Taiwan were 548,000 persons with 74.1% male and 24.9% female. Only 10.9% of those were young farmers with age of 15 to 34 years old. According to the survey of animal industry in 2020, there were about 10,300 livestock farms and 9,900 poultry farms in Taiwan. For those of producing milk, meat and egg in different sectors, the average annual incomes per farm is more than 20 million Taiwan dollar in dairy cattle farms and broiler chicken farms with number of rearing animals per farm were 210 cows and 27,618 birds, respectively. Farm animal genetic resources of 117 breeds in Taiwan updated to 2021, including 20 native breeds, 43 imported breeds, 39 registered new breeds, and 15 ongoing selection breeds, serve as a gene bank for the study of genetic diversity. In Taiwan experience, mule duck production with two species crossbreeding via artificial insemination of laying duck sired with mixed semen from Muscovy duck, it is an essential application of multiple-sires instrumental breeding. In free range production, females of native chicken and laying duck can be multiple-sire natural mating to ensure a higher fertility rate of ovulated eggs. Application of frozen semen and embryo may perform sire-daughter mating, brother-sister mating, or son-dam mating for increasing genetic homogeneity without inbreeding depression of reproduction performance. Inbreeding quickly brings to the surface any detrimental genes that are in a population. With the facility of paternal DNA test, single-sire breeding can be used with extended semen and intra-uterine insemination to test the allele effect of sire genome on their economic traits of pig, cattle, goat, and poultry breeds in a small-scale farming system. Advanced breeding efforts are undertaken to broaden the genetic base of conserved animals and create new breeds that meet the manifold demands in relation to quality, resilience, and sustainability in small-scale farms.
Keywords: livestock, poultry, conservation, selection