Effect Of Parity And Birth Type On Udder Characteristics And Milk Yield Of West African Dwarf Sheep
Adegoke, E.O. Ezekwe, A.G. Agaviezor, O.B.
Keywords: Parity, birth type, udder, ewe, milk yield
Abstract: Twelve West African Dwarf (WAD) sheep, four in each of parities one, two and three were used to determine effect of parity and birth type on udder characteristics and milk yield during lactation and their phenotypic relationship. Udder length (UL), udder width (UW), udder circumference (UC), udder volume (UV), teat length (TL), teat width (TW), teat circumference (TC), distance between the teat (DBT) and teat height from the ground (THG) of sheep were measured weekly for the twelve weeks of lactation commencing from four days post partum. Result showed that, parity and birth type effects on udder characteristics and milk yield were highly significant (P < 0.01).Twin bearing ewes in the third parity had significantly highest values (cm) of 9.56±0.16, 9.75±0.16, 42.29±0.89, 2.05±0.11, 1.32±0.06, 3.42±0.15, 488.59±34.28, 7.26±0.07, 26.46±0.25 for UL, UW, UC, TL, TW, TC, UV, DBT and THG respectively while single bearing ewe in the first parity had the least values (cm) of 7.22±0.26, 8.26±0.21, 32.17±1.06, 1.22±0.05, 0.87±0.04, 2.33±0.11, 263.63±24.36, 6.23±0.07, 23.57±0.38 for UL, UW, UW, UC, TL, TW, TC, UV, DBT and THG respectively. The UL, TL, TC, TW, DBT and THG of single bearing ewes in the third parity had significantly higher values (cm) of 8.60±0.09, 1.73±0.11, 1.17±0.05, 3.20±0.11, 6.96±0.08, 25.49±0.28 than twin bearing ewes in the second parity with 8.05±0.23, 1.62±0.10, 1.07±0.04, 2.56±0.14, 6.66±0.10, 25.00±0.46 for same udder characteristics. Similarly, the parity and birth type effect on milk yield was highly significant (p< 0.01). Twin bearing ewes in the third parity had significantly (p 0.01) highest value (ml) of 249.09±14.85 per day, followed by single bearing ewes in the third parity with 208.08±14.64 ml per day while single bearing ewes in the third parity had the least milk production p of 124.54±8.79 per day. The correlation coefficient between udder dimensions and milk yield obtained were; 0.92, 0.79, 0.91, 0.92, 0.86, 0.88, 0.60, 0.08 and -0.24 for UL, UW, UC, TL, TW, TC, UV, DBT and THG respectively.
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