Comparative study of some phenotypic characteristics between the Ispenc (Turkey) and Southwestern Bulgarian dzhinka chicken breeds

I. Pavlova1, D. Özdemir2, H. Lukanov3*

1Department of General Livestock Breeding, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
2Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Faculty of Agriculture, Akdeniz Üniversity, Antalia, Turkey
3Department of Animal Husbandry – Мonogastric and other animals, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 11 June 2021; accepted for publication 14 July 2021)

Abstract. Ispenc and the Southwestern Bulgarian dzhinka are two small chicken breeds, originating respectively from two neighboring countries – Turkey and Bulgaria. They are characterized by uniformity in some major mutational exterior traits, such as beard and muffs, shank-feathering, vulture hocks, and rose comb. The aim of the study was to compare some of the main morphological and morphometric features of the Ispenc and Southwestern Bulgarian dzhinka breeds. The study was performed on 15 roosters and 25 hens of each breed. Ispenc had a significantly higher live body weight, respectively by 19.65% in roosters and by 17.11% in hens, compared to the Southwestern Bulgarian dzhinka (p<0.001). The birds of the Turkish breed are polydactyl, 5-toed, while the Bulgarian breed does not have this mutation. The length of the back, the wingspan and the length of the shank in Ispenc were significantly higher in both sexes, compared to the Southwestern Bulgarian dzhinka (p<0.01). The comb of the Bulgarian breed is more compact, with significantly lower values in terms of its width (p<0.001). In terms of the dimensions of the head and its formations, there are more statistically significant differences between hens of the two breeds than between roosters. The study leads to the conclusion that the seemingly close breeds involved in the study show a number of statistically significant phenotypic differences, which suggests differences in their genotype.

Biometric data of peach and nectarine fruit and stones

A. Zhivondov1, S. Savchovska1, S. Pandova1, D. Petkova2*, P. Doykina3, I. Manolov4

1Department of Breeding and Genetic Resources, Fruit Growing Institute, 4000 Plovdiv, Bulgaria
2Department of Biotechnology, Technological Faculty, University of Food Technologies, 4002 Plovdiv, Bulgaria
3Department of Catering and Tourism, Economics Faculty, University of Food Technologies, 4002 Plovdiv, Bulgaria
4Department of Agrochemistry and Soil Science, Faculty of Agronomy, Agricultural University, 4000 Plovdiv, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 3 June 2021; accepted for publication 26 July 2021)

Abstract. The article presents a three-year traceability (2018, 2019, 2020) of biometric results of the fruits of eight peach and nectarine varieties. The study covers the fifth, sixth and seventh vegetation period from the period of full fruiting. Varieties included in this investigation were “Filina” (peach, clingstone), “Gergana” (nectarine, clingstone), “July Lady” (peach, semi-clingstone), “Ufo 4” (flat peach, semi-clingstone), “Laskava” (peach, freestone), “Morsiani 90” (nectarine, freestone), “Flat Queen” (flat peach, freestone), and “Evmolpiya” (peach, freestone). The experimental collection plantation was created in the spring of 2014 on the territory of the Fruit Growing Research Institute, Plovdiv, (lat. 42.10384828045957 and long. 24.72164848814686). The data analysis shows that the varieties “Laskava” and “Evmolpiya” produce fruits with the highest weight – 319.60 g and 303.60 g, respectively. Medium weight is registered in the “Morsiani 90” variety (226.07 g) and the “July Lady” variety (193.87 g). “UFO 4” is characterized with the smallest fruits – an average of 143.83 g and the highest flesh yield. Considering the fact that the “Filina” variety is very early ripening, its fruits can be treated as large for the season – 170.21 g. The stones of the “July Lady”, “Morsiani 90” and “Evmolpiya” varieties have the largest average mass

Breeding assessment of new promising cotton lines

V. Dimitrova, R. Dragov

Field Crops Institute – Chirpan, 6200 Chirpan, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 7 June 2021; accepted for publication 2 August 2021)

Abstract. Cotton breeding in Bulgaria is mainly aimed at improving the earliness, productivity and fiber quality of modern varieties. The creation of new genetic diversity is one of the basic prerequisites for the success of breeding programs. The aim of the study was to evaluate cotton lines obtained by intraspecific and remote hybridization combined with backcross technology, with a view to their most effective usage in selection. Twenty-three lines were included in competitive variety trials conducted during the 2014-2017 period. The averaged results showed that lines 550, 639, 641, obtained by remote hybridization, appeared to be very promising. These three lines were distinguished by the best combination of productivity, fiber length and fiber lint percentage, and by these three indicators they exceeded the standard variety Chirpan-539. A new cotton variety Aida (No. 457) was approved, which in seed cotton yield and fiber yield, and technological fiber properties surpassed the standard varieties Chirpan-539 for earliness and productivity and Avangard-264 for fiber quality. The candidate variety 535 continued the state variety testing. Two new candidate cotton varieties No. 550 and No. 553 were released. In the state variety testing the three candidate varieties confirmed their qualities. The obtained lines, distinguished by one trait or by a complex of qualities, enriched the gene pool of Bulgarian cotton.

Morphological and morphometric characterization of Bulgarian local chicken breed – Southwest Bulgarian dzinka

H. Lukanov1*, I. Pavlova2

1Department of Animal Husbandry – Мonogastric and other animals, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, Student’s campus, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
2Department of General Livestock Breeding, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Trakia University, Student’s campus, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 24 January 2020; accepted for publication 7 June 2021)

Abstract. The poultry genetic resources of the Republic of Bulgaria cover mostly the domestic chicken and domestic pigeon species. A number of introduced breeds of chickens are bred in the country, but also some local primitive and decorative breeds. Southwest Bulgarian dzinka is one of the three bantam chicken breeds that originated in Bulgaria. The aim of the study is to make a complete exterior characteristic of the Southwest Bulgarian dzinka breed. A phenotypic evaluation of a total of 29 roosters and 61 hens was performed. The mean body weight of roosters was 620.7±18.9 g and 492.7±8.42 g of hens. The birds are characterized by the presence of a small rose comb, beard and well feathered legs. The most common color of the plumage is spangled. The legs and beak are light in color, except for the black color of the plumage. The eyes are orange-red. The calculated Index for massiveness, Index of compactness and Index of long-leggedness for roosters were 5.35±0.13, 218.57±4.15 and 46.36±1.83, respectively, and 4.62±0.09, 214.62±3.60, 41.03±1.25 for hens.

Live weight, Body condition score, body dimensions, and phenotypic correlations between them in sheep of Bulgarian dairy synthetic population

P. Slavova*, N. Dimova, M. Mihaylova, S. Slavova, S. Laleva, Y. Popova, D. Miteva

Agricultural Institute, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 16 January 2021; accepted for publication 26 May 2021)

Abstract: The aim of the present study was to establish live weight, Body condition score (BCS), body dimensions and phenotypic correlations between them in young female breeding animals of Bulgarian dairy synthetic population (BDSP). The object of research were 137 ewe lambs of the flock, bred at the Agricultural Institute in Stara Zagora for a period of 3 years. Live weight of animals and body dimensions were performed at 6, 9 and 18 months of age and Body condition score was assessed. In addition, the phenotypic dependences between indicators were calculated. The data were processed with Statistica software product. Based on the obtained results, it could be summarized that the live weight and bone system of the animals increased more intensively in the period from 6 to 9 months of age, which was accompanied by an increase in BCS. During the next period (after 9 months of age) there was a certain slowdown in the growth rate and a decrease in BCS, but an increase in live weight. The values of the two indicators at the age of 18 months however showed that the physiological condition of the animals was suitable for their inclusion in the breeding process. The highest values of phenotypic correlations were found between live weight, BCS and body dimensions at 6 months of age. At the next two ages (9 and 18 months), these dependencies declined. Live weight, body length, chest depth and croup width maintained a high level of correlation with the body volume. The highest phenotypic correlations between BCS and other indicators were established in animals at 6 months and the lowest ones at 9 months of age

Statistical models based on morphometric traits for live body weight estimation in goats

N.A. Ouchene-Khelifi*, N. Ouchene

Veterinary sciences institute, Saad Dahleb University, Blida 1, road of Soumaa, B.P. 270, Blida 09000, Algeria

(Manuscript received 24 September 2020; accepted for publication 31 March 2021)

Abstract. The objective of this study was to develop statistical models to predict body weight from goat’s body measurements. Data on 1702 goats for circumferences of chest (CG), abdominal circumference (AC) and spiral circumference (SC), height at withers (WH), body length (BL), and body weight (BW) were analysed to study the relationship between linear body measurements and body weight. The present study revealed that in the goats from all breeds studied (Arabia, Makatia, Kabyle, M’zabite, Saanen and Alpine), the weight evolved in the same direction and at the same rate as the linear measurements chosen. The linear measurements were all significantly correlated with animal weight (p<0.001). Results indicated that Arabia goats had the highest WH (71.07 cm) and CG (17.72 cm). The highest measurements were reported in Alpine goats for AC (97.73 cm), BL (78.05 cm), SC (106.29 cm) and BW (41.60 kg). The Kabyle breed were recorded with the lowest values for the WH (64.95 cm), BL (67.58 cm) and BW (29.52 kg). The average live weight was 38.15±10.90 kg with differences according to age, sex and breed (Arabia, Makatia, Kabyle and M’Zabite). Positive and highly significant (p<0.001) correlations were observed between BW and the majority of independent variables. The highest relationship was illustrated between CG with BW (r=0.922). Linear regression analyses were performed to develop the models. The simple regression analysis found all parameters to be significant (p<0.001) (WH, BL, CG, AC and CS) and CG gave more precision on the weight when using a single measurement parameter (R2 varied between 0.950 and 0.967). Therefore, the following formula can be used to estimate the live weight of the animals using only the chest circumference (P=75*CG). The development of these equations would enable producers and researchers to predict the animal body weight and develop strategic plans for the relevant goat herds.

Heritability and correlation coefficient analysis for grain yield and yield-related traits in spring barley (Hordeum vulgare L.)

B. Dyulgerova1*, D. Valcheva1, D. Valchev1, M. Babulicova2, M. Havrlentova2

1Institute of Agriculture, 8400 Karnobat, Agricultural Academy, Bulgaria
2National Agricultural and Food Centre, Research Institute of Plant Production, Piešťany, Slovak Republic

(Manuscript received 24 February 2021; accepted for publication 14 June 2021)

Abstract. The objectives of this study were to estimate the heritability of yield and yield-related traits and to compute the correlation of grain yield with yield-related traits among the spring barley genotypes. The experiment was laid out in a complete block design with three replications in the Institute of Agriculture – Karnobat, Bulgaria during two consecutive years 2017 and 2018. Genotypes differed significantly for all the traits studied. Genotypic coefficients of variation were lower than the corresponding phenotypic coefficients in all the traits studied, indicating a considerable influence of the environment on the expression of the traits. Estimates for broad-sense heritability ranged from 0.65% for grain number per spike to 44.20% for 1000-grain weight. Moderate heritability coupled with relatively high genetic advance as a percent of the mean was found for 1000-grain weight suggesting a reliable possibility for improvement through selection. A significant and positive correlation between grain yield and number of spikes per m2 and grain weight per spike was found. Results of path analysis showed that grain weight per spike and number of spikes per m2 exhibited the highest direct effects on grain yield. The number of spikes per m2 was highly associated with grain yield but mostly influenced by environmental effects. The grain weight per spike should be prioritized for selection of superior spring barley genotypes under conditions of Southeast Bulgaria due to its highest direct effect on grain yield combined with higher heritability than that of grain yield. Moreover, it must be considered that the grain weight per spike had relatively low heritability in a broad-sense so the selection should be practised in later generations in replicated trials.

Correlations between quantitative traits of winter common wheat-breeding tool for increasing grain yield

N. Tsenov1*, T. Gubatov1, I. Yanchev2

1Department of Wheat Breeding and Technology, Agronom Breeding Company, 9300 Dobrich, Bulgaria
2Department of Plant Science, Faculty of Agronomy, Agricultural University, 4000 Plovdiv, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 7 November 2020; accepted for publication 15 April 2021)

Abstract. Information on the relationships between quantitative traits affecting yields is extremely important for winter wheat. For it, the annual genotype*environment interaction is palpable and often masks the influence of individual traits on grain yield. The aim of the study is to determine the traits through the selection of which the grain yield could be significantly increased in the future. The data from three field multifactorial experiments were used (FERT, PGR, ABC), in which a significant influence of various factors (year, point, density, fertilization) on the size and variation of all studied traits was established. In the database thus formed the observed strong variance in the values of the traits is a great prerequisite for the established correlations to be accepted with a high degree of reliability. The mutual influence in the formation of each of the traits is a good basis for their grouping, according to the type of their effect on yield. 1) The characteristics, number of grains per m2 (NGm), grain weight per spike (WGS) and number of productive tillers per m2 (NPT) have a significantly positive effect on grain yield, 2) the weight per 1000 grains (TGW) and number of grains in spike (NGS) are traits that have a direct effect, but it is unstable in manifestation and 3) the traits, as height of stem (HOS), total plant biomass (TBM), and harvest index (HI) do not show a direct effect on grain yields. A significant increase in yield in the breeding of winter wheat can be achieved by increasing the number of grains per unit area (NGm). This is possible while maintaining the achieved level of number of grains in spike (NGS) with a parallel increase of tillering productive ability (NPT). The increase of this trait by selection should be taken into account when reducing the grain size (TGW). This will increase the chance of increasing the number of grains in the spike (NGS), will reduce the weight of the grain per spike (WGS), which in turn will be a prerequisite for optimizing the stability of lodging.

Application of P4 rapid test and exogenous source of progesterone in prevention of early embryonic death in dairy cows

G. Bonev*

1Department of Genetics, Breeding and Reproduction, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 24 September 2020; accepted for publication 15 February 2021)

Abstract. The objectives of this study were: 1) to determine the percent of cows with low P4 at Day 7-8 post-AI; 2) to treat the animal with low progesterone for 14 days with a P4-releasing intravaginal device (PRID DELTA); 3) to analyze the influence of P4 exogenous supplementation on pregnancy rate in treated and non-treated cows and 4) to create a protocol using “P4 Rapid” test allowing increased pregnancy rate under farm conditions. For this purpose, the current study has been conducted on 155 repeat breeding Holstein cows (<3 artificially inseminated – AI) with prolonged estrus cycle (<26 days). At day 7 and 8 post-AI, the milk progesterone levels were measured (P4 Rapid test). The cows with low P4 (n=104 or 67%) were divided into two groups each n=52. In Group I the progesterone devices were inserted for two weeks and control Group II without progesterone devices. At days 40 and 50 post artificial insemination (AI) all animals (n=104) were submitted to ultrasound pregnancy detection. Pregnancy was registered in 27 animals (51.9%) for Group 1, and in 16 cows (30.7%) for Group II. P4 Rapid is a quick, easy and practically applicable test to measure milk progesterone levels in dairy farms. The method is highly accurate and detects animals with low or high P4 at Day 7-8 after insemination. It also allows identification of conditions such as ovarian cysts, ovarian hypofunction and distinguishing of cycling and non-cycling cows. The combination of P4 measurement by P4 Rapid test and treatment with exogenous P4 to increase circulating concentrations in the first few days after conception can prevent embryo death and improve reproductive efficiency in dairy cattle.

Grain quality of mutant lines of six-rowed barley

B. Dyulgerova*, N. Dyulgerov

Institute of Agriculture, 8400 Karnobat, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 9 December 2020; accepted for publication 26 January 2021)

Abstract. The aim of this study was to assess the variation in grain quality traits among mutant lines of winter feed barley. Nine mutant lines derived from the advanced breeding line Kt3029 and 10 mutant lines derived from variety GA-Luttrell along with their parent forms were evaluated. The study was conducted at the Institute of Agriculture – Karnobat during the period 2015-2017. Test weight, 1000-grain weight, the content of protein, starch, lysine, fat, ash, and fibre were determined. Significant differences between the mutant lines and the parent forms for the studied traits were observed. Significantly higher protein content compared to parent was found in the grain of mutant lines 22/1-5, 22/2-10 and 22/1-12 from line Kt3029 and 26/1-1, 26/1-3 and 26/2-11 from variety GA-Luttrell. The grain of mutant line 26/2-12 had the best combination of protein and starch. Mutant lines 22/1-11 and 22/1-12 from Kt3029 and 26/1-1, 26/2-1 and 26/2-12 from variety GA-Luttrell showed a good combination between protein content and 1000-grain weight. Those mutant lines can be included in the breeding program for the development of varieties with improved feed quality.