Data on 1542 Damascus kids, collected from 1977 to 1981, were used to study environmental and genetic factors influencing pre-weaning and post-weaning growth traits of kids. Season of birth, type of birth, sex of kid and dam lactation number were the environmental factors investigated. Phenotypic and genetic parameters were estimated from paternal half-sib correlations. The average sire family size was 17·2 kids. Single kids were heavier at birth, at weaning and at 140 days of age than twins or other multiples (P < 0·01). Male kids were heavier (P < 0·01) and grew faster (P < 0·01) than female kids from birth to 140 days of age (4·7 and 4·2 at birth, and 29·2 and 24·6 kg at 140 days, respectively). Dam lactation number significantly affected pre-weaning growth, but had no effect on the post-weaning growth rate of kids.
Heritabilities for birth, weaning and 140-day weights, and pre-weaning and post-weaning growth rate, were 0·31 (s.e. 0·08), 0·27 (s.e. 0·07), 0·21 (s.e. 0·07), 0·16 (s.e. 0·06) and 0·22 (s.e. 0·07), respectively. Genetic correlations were mostly high and all positive, especially between weaning weight and 140-day weight (0·82 (s.e. 0·08)), and pre-weaning growth rate and 140-day weight (0·80 (s.e. 0·10)). The corresponding phenotypic correlations were also high and positive (0·71 and 0·67, respectively). No genetic antagonisms were found among the characters studied. Response to selection for post-weaning growth should be effective.