Dr Thobela Nkukwana

University of Pretoria
Department of Animal Science

Senior Lecturer: Poultry Nutrition and Production
Programme Leader: Monogastric Poultry Unit


Dr Thobela Nkukwana is involved in teaching of the poultry nutrition and production module, as well as various components of the animal nutrition module. To date, she has graduated seven masters and one doctoral degrees, and currently supervising three doctoral and four masters’ students. Over the years, together with the students she supervised and collaborators, she has published several articles in internationally accredited peer reviewed journals. She serves as a sub-editor for the South African Journal of Animal Science (SAJAS), serve as Editorial Board member and journal sub-editor of Welwitschia International Journal of Agricultural Sciences (an interdisciplinary publication of the University of Namibia’s Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, ISSN: 2026-8750) and occasionally reviews for other reputable international scientific journals.

Her research focus areas are on:

  • Use of natural and biotech feed additives as alternatives to in-feed antibiotics for safer and sustainable production of poultry meat and eggs. 
  • Digestive physiology and gut health, including the use of exogenous enzymes to enhance digestibility.
  • Potential use of various agro-processing by-products for partial replacement of conventional feed ingredients such as maize and soybean meal with the inclusion of exogenous enzymes.
  • Climate change effects on the conservation and continued use of indigenous (heritage) poultry
  • Welfare in poultry production systems