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Effect of initial body condition of Boer × Spanish yearling wethers and level of nutrient intake on change in mass of internal organs and tissues

A. T. Ngwa1, L. J. Dawson2, R. Puchala1, G. Detweiler1, R. C. Merkel1, I. Tovar-Luna1, T. Sahlu1, and A. L.Goetsch1

1E (Kika) de la Garza American Institute for Goat Research, Langston University, Langston, OK, 2 College of Veterinary Medicine, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater

Yearling Boer × Spanish wethers (54) were used to assess effects of initial body condition and level of feed intake on change in mass of internal organs and tissues. Before the experiment, 27 wethers were fed to achieve high body condition score (BCS; 1 to 5) and BW (IF) and 27 were fed for low BCS and BW (IT). During the experiment, IF wethers were fed low amounts of a pelletized diet and IT wethers received high amounts, with periodic changes in accordance with target BW change of -83 and 83 g/d, respectively. Harvest measures were determined before the experiment and after 12 and 24 wk. As expected, there were numerous treatment x time interactions (P < 0.05). BCS was 3.8, 3.2, 2.6, 1.9, 2.8, and 3.5 (SE = 0.11) and live BW was 53.3, 46.2, 42.4, 36.6, 40.1, and 48.2 kg (SE = 2.03) for IF-0 wk, IF-12 wk, IF-24 wk, IT-0 wk, IT-12 wk, and IT-24 wk, respectively. Carcass mass was 24.7, 21.6, 20.2, 14.7, 17.7, and 22.3 kg (SE = 1.02), and mass of noncarcass components was 24.7, 21.6, 20.2, 14.7, 17.7, and 22.3 kg (SE = 0.73) for IF-0 wk, IF-12 wk, IF-24 wk, IT-0 wk, IT-12 wk, and IT-24 wk, respectively. There were substantial declines in mass of many internal organs with advancing time for IF compared with relatively small change for IT. Examples include the reticulo-rumen (1,030, 589, 516, 865, 778, and 729 g; SE = 41.2), abomasum (229, 161, 128, 196, 187, and 191 g; SE = 10.0), small intestine (594, 269, 227, 546, 325, and 364 g; SE = 20.5), large intestine (397, 240, 240, 325, 325, and 264 g; SE = 17.2), liver (864, 454, 419, 556, 604, and 669 g; SE = 30.7), heart (252, 162, 165, 185, 156, and 169 g; SE = 8.9), and kidneys (138, 90, 89, 101, 105, and 103 g for IF-0 wk, IF-12 wk, IF-24 wk, IT-0 wk, IT-12 wk, and IT-24 wk, respectively; SE = 5.1). Conversely, change in visceral fat was much greater for IT vs IF (5.7, 3.9, 2.8, 0.6, 2.5, and 5.1 kg for IF-0 wk, IF-12 wk, IF-24 wk, IT-0 wk, IT-12 wk, and IT-24 wk, respectively; SE = 0.33). In conclusion, these results suggest that initial body condition can impact change in mass of energetically expensive internal organs with different planes of nutrition as well as of energy storage depots such as visceral fat, which may influence nutrient requirements and efficiency of energy use.


 

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