Growth and Reproductive Development of Red Deer Calves (Cervus-Elaphus) Born Out-of-Season

Clare Lesley Adam, C E Kyle, Pauline Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Since the productivity of farmed red deer is constrained by their inherent seasonal biology, the potential advantages of breeding out-of-season following melatonin administration were investigated. Calves born in February (F; no. = 8) were heavier at weaning in September of the same year than calves born with normal birth dates in June (J; no. = 8) (73.2 v. 441 (s.e.d. 3.59) kg; P < 0.001) and at the end of April of the next year (88.0 v. 67.6 (s.e.d. 6.44) kg; P < 0.01) although their suckled live-weight gain to 100 days of age was lower (304 v. 361 (s.e.d. 21.4) g/day; P < 0.05). After weaning, F calves had higher voluntary food intake than J calves (g dry matter per head per day) from September to November (1643 v. 1124 (s.e.d. 92.6); P < 0.001), November to February (1435 v. 916 (s.e.d. 67.9); P < 0.001), and February to April (1487 v. 1059 (s.e.d. 115.5); P < 0.01).

Unlike J calves, F calves showed puberty in their first autumn. F male calves (no. = 3) grew antlers which hardened in November, whereas J males (no. = 3) did not, and F males, aged 8 months, had significantly higher mean plasma concentrations of testosterone than J males, aged 4 months (1-35 v. 0.28 (s.e.d. 0.154) mug/l, P < 0.001). Oestrous cyclicity was observed in 3/5 group F females, aged 9 months, but in 0/5 group J females, aged 5 months. Although the dams of F and J calves had similar live weights at mating, birth and 100 days post partum, F dams were heavier (P < 0.05) at weaning. Following parturition, F dams had a mean voluntary food intake of 2700 (s.e. 110) g dry matter per head per day from February to April.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-270
Number of pages6
JournalAnimal Production
Volume55
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1992

Keywords

  • FOOD INTAKE
  • LIVE-WEIGHT GAIN
  • MELATONIN
  • RED DEER
  • BREEDING-SEASON
  • PERFORMANCE
  • LACTATION
  • ONSET
  • STAGS
  • COWS
  • food intake
  • live-weight gain
  • melatonin
  • red deer
  • breeding-season
  • performance
  • lactation
  • onset
  • stags
  • cows

Cite this

Growth and Reproductive Development of Red Deer Calves (Cervus-Elaphus) Born Out-of-Season. / Adam, Clare Lesley; Kyle, C E ; Young, Pauline.

In: Animal Production, Vol. 55, No. 2, 10.1992, p. 265-270.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T1 - Growth and Reproductive Development of Red Deer Calves (Cervus-Elaphus) Born Out-of-Season

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AU - Kyle, C E

AU - Young, Pauline

PY - 1992/10

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N2 - Since the productivity of farmed red deer is constrained by their inherent seasonal biology, the potential advantages of breeding out-of-season following melatonin administration were investigated. Calves born in February (F; no. = 8) were heavier at weaning in September of the same year than calves born with normal birth dates in June (J; no. = 8) (73.2 v. 441 (s.e.d. 3.59) kg; P < 0.001) and at the end of April of the next year (88.0 v. 67.6 (s.e.d. 6.44) kg; P < 0.01) although their suckled live-weight gain to 100 days of age was lower (304 v. 361 (s.e.d. 21.4) g/day; P < 0.05). After weaning, F calves had higher voluntary food intake than J calves (g dry matter per head per day) from September to November (1643 v. 1124 (s.e.d. 92.6); P < 0.001), November to February (1435 v. 916 (s.e.d. 67.9); P < 0.001), and February to April (1487 v. 1059 (s.e.d. 115.5); P < 0.01).Unlike J calves, F calves showed puberty in their first autumn. F male calves (no. = 3) grew antlers which hardened in November, whereas J males (no. = 3) did not, and F males, aged 8 months, had significantly higher mean plasma concentrations of testosterone than J males, aged 4 months (1-35 v. 0.28 (s.e.d. 0.154) mug/l, P < 0.001). Oestrous cyclicity was observed in 3/5 group F females, aged 9 months, but in 0/5 group J females, aged 5 months. Although the dams of F and J calves had similar live weights at mating, birth and 100 days post partum, F dams were heavier (P < 0.05) at weaning. Following parturition, F dams had a mean voluntary food intake of 2700 (s.e. 110) g dry matter per head per day from February to April.

AB - Since the productivity of farmed red deer is constrained by their inherent seasonal biology, the potential advantages of breeding out-of-season following melatonin administration were investigated. Calves born in February (F; no. = 8) were heavier at weaning in September of the same year than calves born with normal birth dates in June (J; no. = 8) (73.2 v. 441 (s.e.d. 3.59) kg; P < 0.001) and at the end of April of the next year (88.0 v. 67.6 (s.e.d. 6.44) kg; P < 0.01) although their suckled live-weight gain to 100 days of age was lower (304 v. 361 (s.e.d. 21.4) g/day; P < 0.05). After weaning, F calves had higher voluntary food intake than J calves (g dry matter per head per day) from September to November (1643 v. 1124 (s.e.d. 92.6); P < 0.001), November to February (1435 v. 916 (s.e.d. 67.9); P < 0.001), and February to April (1487 v. 1059 (s.e.d. 115.5); P < 0.01).Unlike J calves, F calves showed puberty in their first autumn. F male calves (no. = 3) grew antlers which hardened in November, whereas J males (no. = 3) did not, and F males, aged 8 months, had significantly higher mean plasma concentrations of testosterone than J males, aged 4 months (1-35 v. 0.28 (s.e.d. 0.154) mug/l, P < 0.001). Oestrous cyclicity was observed in 3/5 group F females, aged 9 months, but in 0/5 group J females, aged 5 months. Although the dams of F and J calves had similar live weights at mating, birth and 100 days post partum, F dams were heavier (P < 0.05) at weaning. Following parturition, F dams had a mean voluntary food intake of 2700 (s.e. 110) g dry matter per head per day from February to April.

KW - FOOD INTAKE

KW - LIVE-WEIGHT GAIN

KW - MELATONIN

KW - RED DEER

KW - BREEDING-SEASON

KW - PERFORMANCE

KW - LACTATION

KW - ONSET

KW - STAGS

KW - COWS

KW - food intake

KW - live-weight gain

KW - melatonin

KW - red deer

KW - breeding-season

KW - performance

KW - lactation

KW - onset

KW - stags

KW - cows

M3 - Article

VL - 55

SP - 265

EP - 270

JO - Animal Production

JF - Animal Production

SN - 0003-3561

IS - 2

ER -