The effect of genotype and birth type on gestation length and linear body measurements of crossbred Nigerian goats
The research was conducted in Enugu State University of Science and Technology, in the then Abakaliki campus in the Small Ruminant Research and Multiplication Unit, Department of Animal Science and Fisheries. The records were obtained from 60 does of crossbred Nigerian goats from three genotypes (WADG x RSG-main cross; RSG x WADG reciprocal cross and RSG x F1 – F1 backcross). They were housed and managed under semi-intensive system. The animals were fed with concentrates at 200 – 300g per goat per day and allowed to browse on the university paddock between 1500 – 1700pm. Weekly weights and live body measurements of the kids were recorded from weaning till 20 weeks of age. The results indicate that genotype of the animals and birth type had significant (P<0.05) influence on the linear traits and gestation periods of the animals. The crossbred recorded higher values for shin, head circumferences, and ear length. Body weights also had significant effect with the crossbreds displaying superior values (P<0.05). Correlation coefficient of the traits was high except for body weight and ear length that negatively correlated (r = -01) indicating that other parameters except ear length can be selected for improvement at the same time. It was concluded that Nigerian crossbreed goats are beneficial for increased meat yield and that the significant correlations between body weight and body measurements indicate that they could be used in selection programme.
Agro-Science Vol. 6 (2) 2007: pp. 48-51