Last update: August 17, 2011 02:20:48 PM E-mail Print

 

EFFECT OF MELATONIN IMPLANTS* ON SEXUAL ACTIVITY OF ANGORA GOATS IN THE OFF-SEASON

 

J.C. Diedericks, P.R. King & W.A. Coetzer1

 

Grootfontein College of Agriculture, Middelburg CP,

1Dept. Animal Physiology, Stellenbosch University

 

It is generally accepted that the Angora goat has a very short breeding season which restricts certain management options. It has been reported that the continuous release of melatonin via subcutaneous implants advances the natural peak of reproductive performance in several breeds of sheep. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficiency of melatonin implants to induce breeding activity in Angora goats during their anoestrous period (September-February). Eighty mature Angora does (> 35kg) were isolated from rams for a period of 2 months preceeding the mating period (mid November). The does were allocated at random to the control and melatonin treatment groups and kept separately for the duration of the experimental period. Melatonin implants were administered subcutaneously to all rams and does in the experimental group four weeks prior to joining. The control does received no melatonin treatment. Four per cent fertile rams were used in each group. All animals were fed a main- tenance ration. A significant (P < 0.05) increase in favour of the melatonin group as compared to the control was observed in the percentage does kidding (67.5 vs 35) and the kidding percentage (95 vs 52.5). Results indicate that melatonin treatment could be a practical method to breed Angora goats outside their normal breeding season.

* Melatonin marketed as "Regulin" (Gene Link Aust. Ltd)

 

Published

Proceedings 30th SASAP congress