INFLUENCE OF STRAIN, AGE AND SEX ON THE CARCASS CHARACTERISTICS OF TURKEYS
Santhi*, A. Kalaikannan and A. Sundaresan1
Department of Livestock Products Technology, Veterinary College and Research Institute, Namakkal, Chennai, India.
1Directorate of Centre for Animal Production Studies, TANUVAS, Chennai.
Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University
[Corresponding author E-mail*: email@example.com]
Received: 20-07-2015 Revised: 04-08-2015 Accepted: 22-09-2015
A 24 weeks experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of strain, age and sex on the carcass characteristics of three strains of turkeys namely Beltsville small white (BSW), Desi and Nandanam turkey I (NTI) (a strain developed by Tamilnadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Chennai, India). The experimental design was a completely randomized with three treatments (strains) and three replicates. At the end of 16th, 20th and 24thweek of age, two birds (one male and one female) from each replicates were slaughtered. The percent eviscerated weight (EWP) and ready to cook weight (RTCWP -eviscerated weight with giblet weight) was significantly lower at 16th week of age than 20th and 24th week of age regardless of strain and sex. Breast weight percent was significantly higher at 20 weeks of age, thigh weight percent at 16 and 20 weeks of age, drumstick weight percent at 16 weeks of age and back and neck weight percent at 24th week of age. There was no significant difference in wings weight percent between the age groups. BSW had the highest percent eviscerated and ready to cook weight among the strains. There was no significant difference between percent eviscerated and ready to cook weight between the sexes. In cut up parts percent there was significant difference neither between the strains nor the sexes. Feed consumed per kilogram of dressed weight was appreciably lower in BSW. Sensory evaluation revealed that the overall acceptability of meat from 16th week age bird was significantly higher regardless f the sex and strain. It is concluded that BSW turkeys are economical than the other two strains if provided with optimum nutrition and management. In general, 16th week of age would be optimal for slaughtering of turkeys which proves to be economical and also preferred by the consumer.
Keywords: strain, age, sex, turkey, weight