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The effect of heather supplementation on gastrointestinal nematode infections and performance in Cashmere and local Celtiberic goats on pasture

AutorOsoro, Koldo; Benito-Pena, A.; Frutos, Pilar ; García, Urcesino; Ortega Mora, Luis M.; Celaya, P.; Ferre, Ignacio
Palabras claveGoat breed
Gastrointestinal nematodes
Live weight
Fecha de publicaciónfeb-2007
CitaciónSmall Ruminant Research 67(2-3): 184-191 (2007)
ResumenA study was performed on 48 adult dry goats (16 local Celtiberic and 32 Cashmere does) at pasture and naturally infected with gastrointestinal nematodes to investigate the effects of heather supplementation on faecal egg count(s) (FEC) and live weight changes. The experiment was carried out in a mountain area in the north-west of Spain from June to November in 2003. Two plots of 10,550 and 9,050 m(2) with perennial ryegrass/white clover (Lolium perenne/Trifolium repens) pastures were established and a total of 24 goats (8 local Celtiberic does and 16 Cashmere does) were randomly allocated to each plot. The trial consisted of comparing live weight changes and FECs in goats fed heather supplement (treated group) or not (control group). A supplement of freshly cut heather was offered ad libitum to the treated group every 3 days in the morning. Cashmere does showed a significantly (P < 0.001) lower live weight decrease than the Celtiberic goats. The goats supplemented with heather showed a lower FEC than compared controls and this effect was significant (P < 0.05) in August and in the following controls (September, October and November). Two goats died before November in the control group. In conclusion, it seems that the availability of heather reduces the FEC in goats grazing ryegrass/white clover pastures and tends to improve their live weights.
Descripción8 pages, 4 figures, 1 table.-- Available online Nov 28, 2005.
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.smallrumres.2005.09.032
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