Effect of Age, Hair Type and Body Condition Score on Body Conformation Traits in Yankasa Rams

  • GN Akpa
  • IO Suleiman
  • C Alphonsus
Keywords: Age, Body condition score, Body conformation traits, Yankasa rams

Abstract

The study was conducted to determine the influence of age, hair type and body condition score on body weight and body conformation traits using 62 Yankasa rams. The ages of the rams were categorized into three; 12-18, 19-24 and 25-36 months. The hair types which were determined through touching and feeling were categorized according to the length and texture of the hairs as thus; short-smooth (SS), long-curly (LC), long-smooth (LS) and short-rough (SR). The body condition was scored on a scale of 1 to 5. The linear body measurements {heart girth (HG), stature (ST), chest width (CW), withers height (WH), body depth (BD), body length (BL) and rump width (RW)} were measured in centimeters (cm) using flexible tape. The results showed that the mean BW, HG, ST, CW, WH, BD, BL and RW were 20.31kg, 66.35cm, 62.35cm, 10.41cm, 61.83cm, 38.99cm, 59.30 and 21.26cm, respectively. Age, hair type and BCS significantly (P<0.01) influenced body weight and body conformation traits in Yankasa rams. The BW and body conformation traits increased with increase in age of the rams. The short haired rams (short rough and short smooth hair) were relatively taller (HW, ST), longer (BL), broader (HG, CW) and deeper (BD) with higher BW than the long haired rams (long curly and long smooth hair). Rams with BCS 4 were bigger in size (HW, ST, CH, WH, BL, BD and RW) and weight (BW) than those with BCS of 3. The results therefore, suggest that age, hair type and body condition score are important sources of variation in body conformation of Yankasa sheep.
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eISSN: 1119-4308