1Department of LivestockProductionManagement, Faculty of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry, SKUAST-K Shuhama, Auluteng, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
2Departmentof Animal Husbandry, Government of Jammu and Kashmir, India
3Department of LivestockProducts Technology, Faculty of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry, SKUAST-K Shuhama, Auluteng, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
4Department of Animal Nutrition, Faculty of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry, SKUAST-K Shuhama, Auluteng, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
Receive Date: 09 February 2013,
Revise Date: 03 March 2013,
Accept Date: 16 March 2013
The present study was aimed to improve the reproductive performance of Corriedale ewes by nutritional flushing. Forty Corriedale ewes were divided into four treatment groups (TC, T1, T2 and T3) with 10 ewes in each group (n=10). At the beginning of the breeding season extra feeding (flushing regime) was started for approximately 34 days such that two estrus cycles were covered. First group i.e. TC (control) received no concentrate supplement, only grazing for 6-8 h was practiced. The treatment groups were fed concentrate supplement of 300 g/ewe/d (T1), 400 g/ewe/d (T2) and 500 g/ewe/d (T3) for 34 days in addition to grazing for 6-8 h. Changes in body weight were significantly (P≤0.05) higher in the ewes fed 500 g concentrate than TC and T1 while no significant difference was found between the other groups in respect of the body weight gain of the ewes. T2 and T3 groups revealed significantly (P≤0.05) higher body condition score than that of control and between T2 and T3 groups than that of T1 group, however no significant difference between Control and T1 groups as well as between T2 and T3 groups were observed, respectively. The tupping percentage recorded in the ewes of all the four groups was 100% and the lambing percentage observed was found to be 70%, 80%, 90% and 100% in TC, T1, T2 and T3 groups, respectively. An increase (P≤0.05) was observed in the birth weight of lambs with highest average weight observed in T3 group followed by T2 group, T1 group ewes and control.The study revealed that the body weight of ewes, dam performance during their gestation period, lambing rate and birth weight of lambs of Corriedale ewes showed considerable improvement due to nutritional flushing. The study also indicated that among all four treatment groups, T3 showed significant improvement in body weight and reproductive efficiency as a result of flushing supplementation during mating season. Hence it was concluded that feeding 500 g of concentrate in addition to sufficient grazing is ideal feeding regimen as compared to other treatment groups in order to achieve a higher body condition score and reproductive performance.
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