Document Detail

Maternal nutrition during early and mid-to-late pregnancy: comparative effects on milk production of twin-born ewe progeny during their first lactation.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23230109     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Studies using sheep models indicate that the fetal mammary gland is sensitive to maternal nutrition during gestation; however, results have been inconsistent and do not identify critical feeding periods. This study aimed to clarify previous findings by partitioning the period of maternal nutritional manipulation into two stages; early and mid-to-late pregnancy. Sixty six twin-born, twin-bearing ewes born to dams that were fed either sub-maintenance (L(P21-50)), maintenance (M(P21-50)), or ad libitum (H(P21-50)) during early pregnancy (d 21 to 50 of pregnancy) and then either maintenance (M(P50-140)) or ad libitum (H(P50-140)) during mid-to-late pregnancy (d 50 to 140 of pregnancy) were milked once a week, starting from d 7 ± 1 postpartum, for seven subsequent weeks to enable estimation of daily milk yield and composition. Their subsequent lambs were weighed weekly. Ewes born to dams fed M(P21-50) tended to have greater accumulated milk (P = 0.10), fat (P = 0.07), and net energy (P = 0.06) yields over 50-d, compared with ewes born to dams fed L(P21-50) and H(P21-50). In contrast, ewes born to dams fed H(P50-140) tended to have greater accumulated milk (P = 0.10) and lactose (P = 0.09) yields compared with ewes born to dams fed M(P50-140). Grand-offspring birth weights were unaffected by granddam nutrition during pregnancy. Ewes born to dams fed H(P21-50) weaned lighter lambs (P = 0.05) than ewes born to dams fed L(P21-50) and tended to wean lighter lambs (P = 0.07) than ewes born to dams fed M(P21-50), whereas there were no differences between the weaning weights of lambs (P = 0.43) from ewes born to dams fed H(P50-140) and M(P50-140). Maintenance nutrition of dams during early pregnancy appears to be associated with an improved lactation performance of ewe offspring. Higher levels of nutrition during mid-to-late pregnancy also appear to improve the first lactation performance of ewe offspring. Interestingly, whilst grand-offspring birth weights were unaffected, weaning weight appears to be influenced by granddam early pregnancy nutrition in a manner discordant with their dam's lactational performance. Results from this study indicate that dam nutrition during early pregnancy can influence the lactational performance of ewe offspring and the BW at weaning of their grand-offspring which may ultimately affect farmer profits. This highlights the importance of nutritional management of breeding ewes during this period.
A M Paten; P R Kenyon; N Lopez-Villalobos; S W Peterson; C M C Jenkinson; S J Pain; H T Blair
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2012-12-10
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of animal science     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1525-3163     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Anim. Sci.     Publication Date:  2012 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-12-11     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8003002     Medline TA:  J Anim Sci     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
International Sheep Research and National Research Centre for Growth and Development, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
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