Farm science

By Manny Piñol

The names Gregor Johann Mendel and Johann Karl Nestler may not ring a bell to ordinary farmers but the genetics research works of these two Czech scientists have resulted in better harvests and improved breeds of animals today.

Mendel, an Agustinian Friar, studied the genetics of plants to be able to pre-determine their colour and the shapes of their fruits while Nestler improved the wool production of sheep by scientific cross-breeding.

I am one of the beneficiaries of their pioneering researches on genetics.

Today, in my farm I am applying practical genetics in the breeding of my chicken and in the selection of outstanding varieties of fruit trees by simply identifying the trees which are very prolific and with the sweetest fruits.

Here, I am sharing with you some of the breeds of chicken which I am perpetuating in my farm.

The first photo is that of the rare Ameraucana which lays blue eggs. I already have a number of chicks produced from this breed.

The second photo is that of the authentic Jolo breed which was given to me by the son of Gov. Sakur Tan of Sulu when I visited the province last year.

The third photo shows a cross-breeding between Orientals and a new strain which I developed called "Black Star" to produce the now nationally-known Manok Pinoy.

Fourth frame shows the pure Rhode Island Reds which I personally bred while the fifth photo shows the young Black Australorps which I also bred.

The next frame shows the young Manok Pinoy ready for release to the free range.

The other frames show very rare game fowls which I am breeding in my farm, two yards of Peruvian-Hatch crosses, a trio of the Japsils which came from my friend Jim Clem of Oregon and a trio of the Ray Price Blacks which also came from Jim Clem.

The Ray Price Blacks came from, yes, the singer himself, Ray Price of Texas who popularised such immortal hits as First Time Ever I Saw Your Face.

The next frame shows my youngest son, Imman, with the children of the workers in the farm in the yard where I am breeding Peking ducks.

The last frame shows my grandson, Duane Aniceto, imitating the crowing of the roosters when he last visited the farm.

This early, both Imman and my grandson have shown their passion for animals in the farm and I am sure that they too will soon start browsing about the works of Mendel and Nestler.

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