Nine West African dwarf (Fouta djallon), Red Sokoto (Maradi) and Saanen lactating goats, hand-milked, were used for these studies, which lasted 12 weeks. The Saanen goats' milk was obtained weekly from the Western State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources Urban Dairy Farm at Iwo Road, while similar samples were collected from the herd at the University of Ibadan Teaching and Research Farm. The goats were balanced for stage of lactation, namely early, mid- and late-lactation. They were each maintained on giant star grass (Cynodon nlemfuensis) ad lib. and 1kg dairy concentrate mixture daily.
The mean contents, with standard deviations, of the milks of Saanen, West African dwarf and Red Sokoto goats at mid-lactation respectively were: (in percentages), total solids 12·25±0·078, 18·18±0·392, 15·85±0·077; solids-not-fat (SNF) 8·91±0·142, 10·48±0·471, 10·53±0·140; butterfat 3·34±0·141, 7·78±0·621, 5·32±0·098; protein 3·04±0·139, 5·30±0·292, 4·74±0·021; lactose 4·56±0·167, 5·19±0·176, 4·77±0·053; energy (kJ/g dried milk), 21·08±1·11, 25·51±1·74, 22·17±0·51. Breed differences were significant (P < 0·01). The milk of West African dwarf goats contained more of these milk components than the milk of the Red Sokoto or Saanen goats. The Red Sokoto goats gave milk of higher content than did Saanen goats, even at an early stage of lactation.
Butterfat, protein, lactose and energy values were significantly affected by stages of lactation (P < 0·05) and tended to rise with advancing lactation; this was particularly so with West African dwarf goats.