169 research outputs found

    Identifying constraints to health and production in the UK dairy goat industry :Subtheme; Colostrum

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    Research that informs the health and production of farmed dairy goats is sparse. Therefore, gaps in knowledge regarding current practices and concerns within the UK dairy goat industry were addressed by a postal survey of farmer members of the Milking Goat Association. Some 73% of farmers responded. Findings show extensive variation in farm practices. Farmers’ top priority for further research was kid health (79.5% of farmers), and pneumonia and diarrhoea were reported as the most prevalent illnesses of kids. The findings, alongside published literature and field experience, were used to inform the choice of a focused research topic for this Ph.D research. Kid health has important welfare and economic implications. Colostrum management is vital for kid health but sparsely researched. Therefore, three studies of goat colostrum were undertaken. Study one was an observational study on three commercial dairy goat farms that established baseline measures for the immunoglobulin, nutritional, and energy content of colostrum. Linear regression analyses established that Brix measures significantly predicted the mean ‘total solids’, energy, and immunoglobulin content of goat colostrum. In study two, Bland Altman analyses were used to quantify the reliability of Brix refractometer measures of colostrum, with results helpful for informing the methodology of study one as well as practice on farms. Study three was a single-farm study that measured the colostrum intakes of farmed dairy goat kids that were routinely removed from their mothers at birth and bottle-fed colostrum, providing baseline data for the quantities and timings of colostrum intakes achievable in bottle-fed kids during the first 13 hours of life when real-world factors are in play. These studies provide essential new baseline data for informing future research and guiding better colostrum management on farms and protecting the health, welfare, and production of the large numbers of kids born on commercial dairy goat farms

    Dependence of maize germination and seedlings growth on pH

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    Maize is the top-produced crop in the world. Its chemical composition makes it suitable for human consumption, animal feed, and industrial uses. The total world production of maize in 2021 was 1210 billion tonnes from cultivating about 205 million ha. However, there are many limiting factors for cultivation, such as soil pH. Acidic soils are present on 30%–40% of the world's arable land, while more than 1 billion hectares are alkaline soils. It is important to choose genotypes of crops tolerant to high or low pH. Therefore, we conducted research in laboratory conditions on the influence of pH values (5, 6, 7, and 8) on seed germination and seedling growth of two maize Serbian hybrids ZP 4708 and ZP 5797. The hybrid ZP 4708 had higher germination energy (GE), shoot length (ShL), shoot fresh weight (ShFW), shoot dry weight (ShDW), germination rate index (GRI), and seedling vigor index (SVI) than hybrid ZP 5797. GE, root length (RL), ShL, root fresh weight (RFW), ShFW, root dry weight (RDW), ShDW, and SVI have the highest values in treatment with optimal pH 7, and lowest in treatment pH 5. However, these parameters did not differ significantly between the treatments pH 6 and pH 7

    Proceedings of 14th international symposium Modern trends in livestock production

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    Milk metagenomics and cheese-making properties as affected by indoor farming and summer highland grazing

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    The study of the complex relationships between milk metagenomics and milk composition and cheese-making efficiency as affected by indoor farming and summer highland grazing was the aim of the present work. The experimental design considered monthly sampling (over 5 mo) of the milk produced by 12 Brown Swiss cows divided into 2 groups: the first remained on a lowland indoor farm from June to October, and the second was moved to highland pastures in July and then returned to the lowland farm in September. The resulting 60 milk samples (2 kg each) were used to analyze milk composition, milk coagulation, curd firming, and syneresis processes, and to make individual model cheeses to measure cheese yields and nutrient recoveries in the cheese. After DNA extraction and Illumina Miseq sequencing, milk microbiota amplicons were also processed by means of an open-source pipeline called Quantitative Insights Into Microbial Ecology (Qiime2, version 2018.2; https://qiime2.org). Out of a total of 44 taxa analyzed, 13 bacterial taxa were considered important for the dairy industry (lactic acid bacteria, LAB, 5 taxa; and spoilage bacteria, 4) and for human (other probiotics, 2) and animal health (pathogenic bacteria, 2). The results revealed the transhumant group of cows transferred to summer highland pastures showed an increase in almost all the LAB taxa, bifidobacteria, and propionibacteria, and a reduction in spoilage taxa. All the metagenomic changes disappeared when the transhumant cows were moved back to the permanent indoor farm. The relationships between 17 microbial traits and 30 compositional and technological milk traits were investigated through analysis of correlation and latent explanatory factor analysis. Eight latent factors were identified, explaining 75.3% of the total variance, 2 of which were mainly based on microbial traits: pro-dairy bacteria (14% of total variance, improving during summer pasturing) and pathogenic bacteria (6.0% of total variance). Some bacterial traits contributed to other compositional-technological latent factors (gelation, udder health, and caseins)

    Antioxidants in Animal Feed

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    This includes 17 original research articles and focuses on the knowledge on the effects of dietary antioxidants on host health and performance of production animals, including livestock, poultry and fish. It provides various nutritional approaches to improve antioxidant capacity and benefit host health in animal production. Production animals exposed to air pollution, heavy metals, or other stressful conditions can experience oxidative stress that may suppress animal health, performance, and production, subsequently impacting economic feasibility; hence, maintaining and improving oxidative status, especially through an appropriate nutrition strategy, are essential for normal physiological processes in animals. Promising research results have revealed that the administration of natural or synthetic antioxidants in an animal’s diet may be an important strategy to mitigate the negative influence induced by oxidative stress conditions. The Special Issue has been conceived to set out the knowledge on the effects of dietary antioxidants on host health and performance of production animals. It provides various nutritional approaches, mainly including vitamins, plant extracts, trace elements, non-essential amino acids, etc., to improve antioxidant capacity and benefit host health in livestock, poultry and fish. This book will encourage more scientists to move forward on the path to increasing knowledge on the effect of natural or synthetic antioxidants on the growth and health of production animals

    Innovation Meets Tradition in the Sheep and Goat Dairy Industry

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    The domestic sheep (Ovis aries) and goat (Capra aegagrus hircus) are small ruminant species widely distributed throughout the world. They were among the first animals to be domesticated. Owing to their small stature and versatility, sheep and goats still are one of the most important food source in many arid regions. Traditionally, autochthonous breeds with a strong milk production seasonality were reared in extensive production systems, on a smallholder farming basis. The huge number and variety of their dairy products reflect the different cultures and traditions of vast areas of the world. However, today the traditional ovine and caprine dairy production chain, from farmers to exporters, is facing the challenges of innovation, sustainability, safety, and productivity, while at the same time protecting each product’s individual characteristics. This Special Issue is dedicated to the field of ovine and caprine dairy production with ground-breaking perspectives and approaches, from physical-chemistry studies on milk and dairy, to new feeding strategies, herd management, nutritional quality, animal welfare, sustainability, and omics studies

    Better Animal Feeding for Improving the Quality of Ruminant Meat and Dairy

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    Consumers are looking for healthier foods. Animal nutrition is one of the most important environmental factors in product quality, and significantly influences meat and milk and its dairy products. So emphasis is often placed on improving quality though animal feeding. A main target in improving meat and dairy nutritional characteristics is the enhancement of lipid quality, which can be achieved by increasing the content and composition of beneficial fatty acids. Factors such as forage: concentrate ratio, dietary fat supplements, etc. have an essential effect on animal dairy and meat quality. A few studies have shown that meat and dairy from ruminants in pasture is enriched in bioactive substances of natural origin. These animals are also able to utilize increasing amounts of by-products or “unconventional” animal feedstuffs, which can improve the healthful properties of products. Epidemiological studies that find inverse associations between eating red meat and health do not distinguish between meat from livestock fed high-grain diets and livestock foraging on phytochemically rich mixtures of plants. Despite their alleged benefits, research has not elucidated linkages among plant diversity or alternative feedstuffs with potential functional properties in ruminant diets and human health. In addition, dietary manipulations favoring polyunsaturated FA incorporation in dairy and meat lipids increase the risk of lipoperoxidation, which can be efficiently prevented by use of dietary antioxidants. This book collected articles addressing optimal dietary composition for ruminant production to improve the quality of meat and dairy

    Nutritional value and factors affecting milk production and milk composition from dairy sheep: A review

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    Sheep milk contains much higher concentrations of protein, fats, minerals, and vitamins than milk from other common domestic species such as cows and goats. High nutritional value and lower allergic sensitization compared to cow milk make sheep milk an ideal source of nutrition for humans. Moreover, advantages in physicochemical characteristics also make sheep milk a very good raw material for processing, especially in cheese making. However, dairy sheep industry remains small in many regions of the world,  mostly due to restricted genetics and limited milk production. Milk yield and composition are influenced by various factors including genetic parameters, dietary nutrient composition, parity, lambing season, milking frequency, and stage of lactation. Future research on dairy sheep in different production systems especially in developing countries and new genes regulating milk production and quality need to be undertaken

    Understanding the role of ruminal microbiota in phenotype expression in Lacaune dairy sheep

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    Animal breeding has shown in recent years an increasing interest in the use of digestive microbiota information, given the association with the physiological traits of the host. In this context, the hypotheses of this thesis are: 1) the rumen microbiota influence milk composition and udder health traits, and 2) a genetic determinism exist on rumen microbiota that affects milk composition and udder health traits. To address these hypotheses, we explored the relationship between the host genome and ruminal metagenome in the modeling of dairy ewe’s phenotypes. The “MicroGenOL” project was based on 795 Lacaune ewes from two genetic lines reared under the same housing and feeding conditions at the INRAE Experimental Unit of La Fage. For all animals the fine milk composition was predicted by mid-infrared spectra, and for 118 ewes, fatty acids (FAs) were measured by gas chromatography. In addition, all animals were genotyping with 54k SNP chip, and one rumen sampling for all animals, or two one week apart for 118 ewes, were collected. Rumen samples were sequencing of 16S RNA gene. To work with microbial abundances due to their compositional nature, a workflow was defined: after bioinformatics process of the raw sequences, operational taxonomic unit (OTU) counts in the abundance table were transformed in logratios (after zeros imputation) and corrected by environmental factors using linear models. The variability of microbial abundances between two weeks and the impact of data processing on genetic estimations allowed for us to defined the best way to work with, and the limits of results interpretation. The first analysis focused on the influence of the rumen microbiota on the phenotype. We found low (<|0.20|) phenotypic associations with milk FAs and proteins, and moderate (|0.20–0.50|) associations with rumen FAs. In addition, the microbial matrix explains a very low percentage of the fine milk composition variability (microbiability null for FAs and lower than 0.06 for proteins). Using the microbiota data as a whole didn’t allow for evidence relationships with none of the dairy traits, but at the OTU level, associations have been demonstrated with direct products such as rumen FAs and in a lesser extent with milk FAs and proteins. Regarding the existence of host genetic control over the rumen microbiota composition, we found a low impact on the microbiota since only 15% of rumen bacterial abundances showed significant heritabilities (0.10-0.29). The genetic associations for those heritable OTUs with the fine milk composition was high (|0.35-0.99|) but for less than 5% of OTUs. Six quantitative trait loci regions were detected for bacterial abundances in autosomal chromosomes 3, 5, 10 and 11, but none were in common with those of dairy traits. Finally, given that most OTUs were not controlled by host genetics and the weak associations between microbiota and fine milk composition, genetic selection of sheep for microbial abundance does not seem promising. However, considering the transmissibility of non-genetic effect possibly carried by the microbiota could be an interesting opportunity to increase the genetic progress. This project produced new perspectives to incorporate of the host and its microbiota in animal breeding through a better understanding of the biology behind the models
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