Document Detail

Maternal behaviour and the survival of lambs in superfine wool sheep.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11101273     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Superfine merino lambs from superfine and medium-wool ewes were compared to test the hypothesis that superfine ewes have poorer maternal capacity than broader wool ewes. All lambs were sired by one ram using artificial insemination in the superfine ewes and embryo transfer in the medium-wool ewes. This ensured a similar genetic background in all lambs. Single born lambs from the superfine ewes were 1.5 kg lighter than those from medium-wool ewes (3.3 v. 4.8 kg, P<0.05). Compared with the medium-wool ewes, in the first hour after birth the superfine ewes spent less time grooming their lambs (8.7 v. 25.2 min, P<0.05) and more time separated from them (21.3 v. 0.0 min, P<0.05). The lambs of superfine ewes also stood and attempted to suck for less time (17.7 and 2.4 min v. 32.4 and 10.5 min, P<0.05) than those of medium-wool ewes. Twenty-nine per cent of lambs from superfine ewes died in the first 4 weeks after birth compared with only 4% of lambs from medium-wool ewes. It was concluded that superfine ewes lost more lambs than medium-wool ewes and that this was associated with their lambs being smaller at birth and with the ewes being poorer mothers.
R C Kuchel; D R Lindsay
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Reproduction, fertility, and development     Volume:  11     ISSN:  1031-3613     ISO Abbreviation:  Reprod. Fertil. Dev.     Publication Date:  1999  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2000-12-06     Completed Date:  2000-12-22     Revised Date:  2003-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8907465     Medline TA:  Reprod Fertil Dev     Country:  AUSTRALIA    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  391-4     Citation Subset:  IM    
Faculty of Agriculture, The University of Western Australia, Nedlands.
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MeSH Terms
Body Weight
Hair / anatomy & histology*
Maternal Behavior*
Sheep / genetics,  physiology*
Species Specificity
Time Factors

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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