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Impact of indoor feeding at late lactation stage on body reserves recovery and reproductive performances of Baladi dairy goats fed on pastoral system

Small Ruminant Research
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.smallrumres.2010.02.007
  • Baladi Goats
  • Adaptive Responses
  • Grazing
  • Stall Feeding
  • Body Reserves
  • Milk Production
  • Reproduction
  • Agricultural Science
  • Biology


Abstract Adaptive capacities of Baladi goats facing situations of food restrictions and re-feeding during lactation have been studied. Three diets were tested: mountain natural rangelands during early lactation, agricultural pastures during mid-lactation and indoor stall feeding during late lactation. Body weight (BW), body condition (BCS) and plasma metabolites (NEFA) as well as milk production (milk yield, milk fat and milk protein contents) were measured in the different feeding situations. Effect of late lactation re-feeding on reproduction was assessed through kids’ birth weight and weight gain from day 0 till day 60 of age. Results showed that on rangelands, goats’ body condition degraded, with initially fat goats loosing more weight and being subject to a greater reserves mobilization than lean ones. These expressed an adaptive behaviour through increasing their daily feed intake and by an intense body reserves replenishment following their transfer to the agricultural pastures and indoor feeding. In late lactation, even goats kept on agricultural pastures showed a similar reconstitution, showing the high priority of body reserves replenishment during late lactation whatever the feeding level. The milk rebounds observed showed a good reactivity from the Baladi goat in response to a feed improvement either on agricultural pasture or indoor. At the end of lactation the milk yield decreased in all feeding situations proving the priority given by the Baladi goats to the body reserves replenishment over the milk production in order to ensure the next cycle. However, even if there was no difference in kids’ birth weights, kids from stall-fed dams had higher weight gains between 0 and 60 days of age when compared to those from underfed ones.

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