FEEDING and MANAGEMENT OF DAMASCUS GOATS CYPRUS EXPERIENCE By Miltiades Hadjipanayiotou

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1 DAMASCUS GOAT

2 FEEDING and MANAGEMENT OF DAMASCUS GOATS CYPRUS EXPERIENCE By Miltiades Hadjipanayiotou Damascus goat is a breed originating from Syria, and is found as pure breed in many M.E. & N. African countries. It is a dual purpose breed (milk & meat), and under good feeding and management can achieve production records among the higher in the world (M.Y. up to 750 kg with 4-4.2% fat) Male Damascus kids consuming 12.5 kg of a milk replacer or kg of milk plus 70 kg of a concentrate mixture (18% CP, DM) and 12 kg roughage can produce kg of top quality meat.

3 FEEDING and MANAGEMENT OF DAMASCUS GOATS: CYPRUS EXPERIENCE In my presentation today, I will try to present part of my work and also make recommendations on feeding & management for optimum performance. In our region, there is scarcity of good quality roughages (low rainfall, limited quantities of water for irrigation). More often, the unit of dietary energy and protein is cheaper when provided even by imported cereal grains and protein supplements compared to locally produced roughages. As a result, high concentrate feeding regime is applied, and research findings have shown that Damascus goats can do well on such diets thanks to added Buffers in their early part of lactation.

4 HOW TO FEED DAMASCUS GOATKIDS FROM WEANING TO MATING From weaning to 120 d: ad-lib concentrate (16% CP as fed) +0.1 kg Hay/d Mating Damascus Goat kids whether mated at 44, 48 or 52 kg BW give similar litter size and the first 60-day M.Y. There is no need to feed for BW > than 44 kg at mating (around 65% of mature BW) Furthermore, there is no need for dietary protein concentration greater than 14%, DM basis from > 5 months old goat-kids

5 Performance of Damascus goats bred as yearlings or as twoyear olds Neither the productive lifespan nor the overall production of the goats were adversely affected by early breeding. On the contrary, there is a definite advantage in the early breeding. Yearlings had longer cumulative lactation, produced more kids at birth and at weaning.

6 ME MJ REQUIREMENTS OF DAMASCUS GOATKIDS AT DIFFERENT GROWTH RATES and BWs In a number of tests, Damascus Goat-kids were offered the energy allowances (ME MJ-head per day) shown below and attained the expected ADGs (NRC, 1981) ADG,g BW, kg

7 DAILY TOTAL FEED ALLOWANCE kg/day (TMR composed of 55% concentrate and 45% Barley hay, 14% CP DMB) BW DAILY GAIN (g) (NRC, 1981) (Kg)

8 ALTERNATIVE FEEDS Studies with grazing PARTIAL REPLACEMENT OF CONCENTRATE and OF ROUGHAGE OFFERED INDOORS BY GRAZING BARLEY FORAGE Establishment of rain-fed cereal forage grazing lands relatively close to the housing facilities, can save concentrates (20%) and roughages (> 50% of the roughages, alfalfa and cereal hays) offered indoors, and can also result in an increase of milk produced by around 6%.

9 The nutritive value of sunflower meal (low protein high fiber) and its effect on replacing straw in diets of dairy ewes and goats EWES GOATS Treatment Control SFM Control SFM Milk yield (kg/d) Fat (g/kg) Concentrate, kg/d Straw, kg/d Sunflower meal can replace up to 50% the straw in diets of moderately producing ewes and goats. In addition, SFM can replace part of soybean meal, and can also safely increase barley grain consumed

10 Replacement of barley grain for corn in concentrate diets fed to Dairy Damascus goats Corn concentrate Barley Concentrate Frequency of feeding the concentrate Once Thrice Once Thrice FCM, 4% kg/d Fat, g/kg CP, g/kg Concentrate intake, g/d Barley hay intake, g/d Goats were offered 0.8 kg of Barley hay/h/d. There were no differences in Milk yield due to frequency of feeding and/or grain used. Barley, but not corn grain resulted in some incidences of digestive upsets (due to faster degradation)

11 EFFECT OF FEEDING CORN or BARLEY GRAIN ON THE PERFORMANCE OF DAMASCUS KIDS AND CHIOS LAMBS LAMBS KIDS Treatment Corn- 0 Corn- 300 Corn- 600 Corn- 0 Corn- 300 Corn- 600 ADG, g FCE (concentrate) Lambs grew faster than kids and had an overall better performance Barley and corn grain can replace each other in diets of lambs, but in Damascus kids corn grain gave somewhat better results than barley grain

12 Voluntary intake of crude olive cake silage by growing Chios ewe-lambs, Damascus goat-kids and Friesian heifers Heifers Ewe-lambs Goat-kids Initial WT, kg Final WT, kg WT-gain (g/day) Intake (g DM/kg W 0.75 ) Concentrate Barley hay Olive cake silage at lib Consumption of silage was higher in heifers than in lambs and kids Voluntary intake of silage during the first 3 weeks of its incorporation was lower in kids than lambs, supporting the assumption that goat kids require longer adaptation period to a new feed.

13 Partial replacement of a conventional roughage (barley hay) with an olive cake silage in diets of lactating ewes, goats and cows EWES GOATS COWS Control Silage Control Silage Control Silage FCM (6%, 4%) Fat (g/kg) Concentrate, kg/d Barley hay, kg/d Straw, kg/d Lucerne hay, kg/d Silage, kg/d Feeding OC silage as partial replacement for conventional roughages is not only possible, but also resulted in higher milk fat content

14 FEED PROCESSING Feeding a finely ground concentrate mixture to young kids is fatal (daily intake, minerals not consumed, ph decrease)! ADG of Male kids on Pellets and Whole Grain + pellets (WGP) was > than those on a mash diet: Mash 159g, Pellet 294, WGP 263 Similarly, Feed Conversion Effeciency was highest in Mash 8.38, Pellets 4.39 WGP 5.22For ADG g of Female kids on P and WGP was also > than those on a mash diet: M 132, P 202, WGP 181 Similarly, FCE was highest in Mash 8.32, P 5.43 WGP 6.21

15 GOATS MILK[kg/d] FAT [%] EXPT. no PELLET Whole grain + Pellets PELLET Whole grain + Pellets 1 2,76 2,38 3,91 4,35 2 2,64 2,68 4,04 4,44 3 2,64 2,39 3,75 4,56 In Damascus goats, there is no need to grind and pellet the cereal grains incorporated in the concentrate mixture. Contrary, goats on Whole grain + Pellets compared to those on the Pellet diet gave milk of somewhat higher fat 38.8 vs 44.5 g/kg (+14.7%)

16 FEEDING LACTATING DAMASCUS GOATS The maintenance Requirements of Damascus goats are similar to those of Chios ewes (0.4 MJ of ME /kg 0.73 )* 1.05:safety margin. The energy in milk is: Y= X, where X=Fat % The efficiency of utilization of dietary ME to milk energy is 62%. Following parturition the concentrate allowance is increased gradually reaching to kg /h/d, provided that the consumption of hay is 0.8 kg daily. Group feeding?? Differences in production between animals within a group. To meet the requirements of higher yielders, we propose offering an increment (+/-) of TMR/Conc., so that Milk Yield and BCS are maintained

17 Goats producing 1.7 kg milk do not need total ration with > than 10% CP, whereas those producing 2.0 kg respond positively to higher dietary CP for FCM yield, rumen NH 3 concentration and in microbial protein in rumen liquor (3.37 vs 2.44 g/100 ml) Feeding a High Protein diet (14 vs 10%), did not affect the fat and total solids of milk, but significantly increased milk protein content and yield. The level of protein did not affect the growth rate of their kids. Twin suckling goats responded to a greater extent to high CP Milk yield /4 CP, g/kg DM basis

18 USE OF BUFFERS Addition of NaHCO 3 to diets predisposing to Low milk fat syndrome is of increasing importance in Damascus goats in early lactation. Shifting rumen fermentation towards C 2 on high concentrates (85%) resulted in less ME required /kg FCM (10.6 vs 9.5 MJ +12.6%) and higher FCM yield (1.85 vs 2.19 kg, +18.4%). Why such low roughages? Scarcity of roughage, frequently dry years. When an adaptation period is practiced, and a proper feeding management is applied (offer roughage prior to concentrate that will contain and buffers, roughage as low to 15% may be safe)

19 The response of Damascus goats to Dietary Energy and Protein The response of Damascus goats to energy deficit is very fast. In mid-lactation, the correlation between Energy-intake and Milk Yield is around In early lactation, the effect is less (0.73) because goats like other ruminants mobilize available body reserves in early lactation. Neither level nor source of protein significantly affected MY or LWT losses of underfed Damascus goats.

20 UNDERFED HIGH ENERGY intake Goats Ewes Goats Ewes MEMJ/h/d MY, kg/d WT-change, g/d Increasing the dietary energy of previously underfed Damascus goats and Chios ewes resulted in significant increase in MY, but the increase in WT was more obvious Conclusions: Damascus goats like other breeds of high potential should be maintained in good BC throughout their production cycle

21 Fractional Outflow Rate from of soybean from the rumen of Damascus goats and Chios ewes was similar. The effective CP, OM and DM degradability of feedstuffs was also similar in the two species, And values used in cows can be used and in Damascus goats and Chios ewes

22 Performance of Damascus goats on three types of suckling Kids suckling/goat MY, kg 3-52 d (weaning) MY, kg days Marketable milk, kg to weaning >>>>>>> milk 3 to 90 days Concentrate intake (kg/goat) Damascus goats suckling twins produced more milk than those suckling one kid. The latter produced more milk and consumed more concentrates than no-suckling goats. Marketable milk was lower in TS. Until weaning marketable milk was higher in 0-suckling, but to 90 d, there was no difference between 0 and Single- suckling goats

23 Which one is recommended? 0-Suckling or Single - Suckling?? Depends on the size of the flock, available facilities, goat s milk prices relative to milk replacers and managerial practices applied in each farm (Is it a problem having milking and suckling flocks simultaneously?? ). It must be underlined however, that allowing kids to suckle their dams following machine milking of dams, results in a marketable milk of lower fat, protein and overall TS. Partial suckling may start when kids are >21 days old, since earlier their milk intake is relatively low. An advantage of PS at 21 d, is that kids start consuming solid feed earlier and the marketable milk is greater.

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