Authors: Mishamo Sulayeman, Kabech Gedeno, Gizachew Hailegebreal, Mandefrot Meaza
A cross sectional study was conducted from November 2017 to March 2018, to assess major causes of chicken mortality and identifying parasite types in and around Hawassa city, Southern Ethiopia. One hundred sixty respondents were selected using multistage sampling technique. Questionnaire and laboratory data were analyzed using STATA version 14. Among the respondents 34% kept their chicken extensively while 52 and 14% used semi-intensive and intensive chicken production system respectively. From 73% of the respondents with separate chicken house, 70% practiced house cleaning. Out of the total respondents; 23, 72 and 5% practiced scavenging, scavenging with supplement and commercial feed for their chicken respectively and 55% of them with free access to water. Only 12% practiced vaccine for the health management of their chicken and 64% dispose dead chicken anywhere in the environment but 34 and 2% bury and burn dead chicken respectively. According to respondents; disease, mismanagement, predator, cannibalism and bad weather condition were reported as major causes of chicken mortality. Out of total 64 fecal samples, 50, 4.5 and 45.5% from local, cross and exotic breeds were found parasite positive respectively. About 63.6, 18.2 and 18.2% of the parasites were detected from chicken reared under extensive, semi-intensive and intensive production system respectively. Six parasite types were mainly identified from Hawassa city and its surrounding. Therefore, chicken improvement program in and around Hawassa city should work intensively to minimize the constraints of the sector and then to increase the production and productivity of chicken. Key words: Chicken, disease, Hawassa, management practices, mortality, parasite.