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Improved acceptance of Chromonaela odorata by goat kids after weaning is caused by in utero exposure during late but not early pregnancy

By Phan Vu Hai, Jan Thomas Schonewille, Dam Van Tien, Henk Everts, Wouter Hendrikus Hendriks

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Abstract

The aim of the current experiment was to study the effect of the phase of pregnancy on in utero learning of Chromonaela odorata by the goat kids by comparing mid pregnancy (day 50–99, MP) with late pregnancy (day 100–145, LP). It was hypothesized that kids born to dams fed C. odorata during late pregnancy (day 100–145) would show an improved post-weaning consumption of this plant. Twenty four female goats (Co breed) were synchronized, inseminated and divided randomly into 4 equal groups. All pregnant goats were fed a diet either without (control) or with 50g of C. odorata leave meal (COLM) at 10:00 am during 30min during mid and late pregnancy. The COLM diet was fed either from 50 to 99 days of pregnancy (mid pregnancy, MP), or from 100 to 145 days of pregnancy (late pregnancy, LP) or from 50 to 145 days of pregnancy (MLP, positive control). After weaning (3 months old), one kid from each goat dam was selected to measure COLM intake for 30min over a 4-week period. Feeding activities of the individually housed goat kids were monitored with a camera system. Post-weaning consumptions of COLM by the goat kids increased significantly (P

Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 159
Pages 50-54
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
DOI 10.1016/j.applanim.2014.07.004
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Tags
  1. Feeding behavior
  2. Goats
  3. pregnancy