Coat pigmentation effects in West African Dwarf goats: live weights and body dimensions
The effect of coat pigmentation on live weight and various body measurements (body length, shoulder width, head width, leg length, neck girth, heart girth, abdominal girth, heart depth and height al withers) of the West African Dwarf (WAD) goats were studied Coat pigmentation significantly (P<0.05) affected live weight with the white and or tan (Awt) goats weighing the most (26.30 kg on the average). Body weight at maturity increased with decrease in pigmentation intensity. Although coat pigmentation had no significant effect on all the body dimensions studied except leg length, it was observed that the white and or tan goats had the largest frame size on the average followed by the brown (Bbl) goats. They however, had shorter legs when compared with either 1he brown or black goals. Frame size also increased with decrease in coat pigmentation intensity. Selection for large frame size and heavy weight at maturity on the basis of coat colour would therefore favour the white goats and those with low pigmentation intensity, where size and market price are 1he determinant factors.
Keywords: Coat colour, body dimensions, live weight, frame size