Estimation of Live Weight From Linear Body Measurements of Three African Breeds of Cattle Under Extensive Management System in Nigeria
Live weight (LWT) and linear body measurements (LBM) of ’dama, Muturu and White Fulani breeds of African cattle during rainy and dry seasons were examined. Fifty and fifty-five cattle under extensive management system were used during rainy and dry season, respectively. Traits measured were live weight, head length, head width, body length, height at wither, heart girth, width of hind quarter, loin girth and length of hindquarter. The data obtained were classified ±SE subjected to linear analyses using Minitab Statistical Software Programme. Breed of cattle significantly (P<0.05) affected all linear body measurement except for length of hind quarter and live weight at rainy season. Effect of sex was not significant (P>0.05) on the traits in both seasons. Age of cattle significantly (P<0.05) accounted for all LBM except LHQ at the dry season. There were high positive significant (P<0.01) correlation between each of the linear body measurement and live weight and also within the linear body measurement observed. The head length had the highest correlation coefficient with body weight R2=0.936 which can be used to predict the live weight of the cattle while the least correlation coefficient was obtained in head width, R2=0.825. In conclusion, White Fulani was the heaviest among the African breeds of cattle. Live weight of cattle can be calculated using Linear Body Measurement. However, Head length can be used to estimate the Live Weight.
Keywords: Live weight, linear body measurement, N’Dama, Muturu, White Fulani cattle, Humid tropic.
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