Thirty (30) day-old native and 30 day-old broiler chicks were subjected to brooding for 14 days. From days 14-21, these birds were acclimatized under the comfort zone of 21°C temperature and 21% relative humidity. The chicks were allotted to five treatments of varying temperature and relative humidity (RH) combinations: 1) Comfort zone (21°C, RH 21±5%); 2) Warm Arid (28°C, RH 23±5%); 3) Warm Humid (28°C, RH 80±5%); 4) Hot Arid (35°C, RH 20±5%); and 5) Hot Humid (35°C, RH 80±5%). Data on feed intake and weekly weight gain were recorded. Cloacal temperature of each chicken was monitored at days 28, 32 and 42. Data collected were statistically analyzed using the 2 x 5 factorial experiment in CRD.
Native chickens had lower (P<0.05) mean final weights, average weight gain, feed consumption and feed conversion ratio than broilers. Among the broilers, those in the comfort zone had the highest average daily gain, feed consumption and feed conversion ratio. Native chickens had more stable responses to various temperature and relative humidity combinations as exhibited by stable cloacal temperature. Results indicate that native chickens perform best in warm arid conditions while broilers perform best in the comfort zone.