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The reproductive performance of Border Leicester ewes in contrasting photoperiodic environments

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 March 2009

H. Ll. Williams
Affiliation:
Department of Livestock Production, University of New England, Armidale, New South Wales, Australia, 2351
C. J. Thwaites
Affiliation:
Department of Livestock Production, University of New England, Armidale, New South Wales, Australia, 2351

Summary

Border Leicester ewes were kept in three contrasting photoperiodic environments, the rhythm at latitude 30° 32′ S (group 1) - 12 h light: 12 h dark interrupted by 6 weeks of continuous light (group 2a) and 12 h light: 12 h dark (group 2b) - from August 1972 to September 1973. In group 1 all ewes exhibited oestrus compared with 87·5% and 57·1% in groups 2(a) and 2(b) respectively. The mean number of oestrous periods per ewe ranged from 4·4 in group 1 to 3·0 in group 2(a) and 1·0 in group 2(b). It is concluded that the non-fluctuating light rhythm had an adverse effect on the reproductive potential of the treated groups and that Border Leicester ewes are dependent on a fluctuating light rhythm for normal reproductive function.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1974

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References

Beaty, T. & Williams, H. Ll. (1971 a). The reproductive performance of British breeds of sheep in an equatorial environment. 1. Mountain breeds. British Veterinary Journal 127, 19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Beaty, T. & Williams, H. Ll. (1971 b). The reproductive performance of British breeds of sheep in an equatorial environment. 2. Lowland breeds. British Veterinary Journal 127, 1019.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McGuirk, B. J. (1967). Breeding for lamb production. Wool Technology and Sheep Breeding 14, 73–8.Google Scholar
Thwaites, C. J. (1965). Photoperiodic control of breeding activity in the Southdown ewe with particular reference to the effects of an equatorial light regime. Journal of Agricultural Science, Cambridge 65, 57–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Trounson, A. D. & Roberts, E. M. (1970). A survey of Border Leicester reproductive efficiency. Proceedings of the Australian Society of Animal Production, Eighth Biennial Conference, 1970, Brisbane, pp. 326–30.Google Scholar
Williams, H. Ll. (1974 a). The reproductive performance of British breeds of sheep in an equatorial environment. Further report and summary. British Veterinary Journal (in the Press).Google Scholar
Williams, H. Ll. (1974 b). The reproductive performance of two British breeds of sheep in contrasting photoperiodic environments. Journal of Agricultural Science 82, 377–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Williams, H. Ll. & Jackson, G. (1971). The shortterm effects of a simulated transfer to higher latitudes on breeding ewes. British Veterinary Journal 127, 366–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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