Deposition of copper, iron, manganese and zinc in the empty body of growing lambs of the breed German Merino Landsheep.


A growth experiment with 108 lambs (breed: German Merino Landsheep) was carried out to examine the effect of gender, body weight (BW) and feeding intensity on the deposition of Fe, Zn, Cu and Mn in the empty body (whole animal minus contents of the gastrointestinal tract and bladder). The lambs (50% female and 50% male animals) were fed at three feeding levels ('low', 'medium' and 'high' by varying daily amounts of concentrate and hay) and slaughtered at different final BWs (30, 45 or 55 kg). Six male and six female animals were killed at a BW of 18 kg representing the animals' BW at the beginning of the comparative slaughter experiment. There were significant main effects for the treatments growth rate and final weight on the daily rate of accretion of the trace elements examined. Feeding intensity had a marked influence on the accretion rate for Fe (P < 0.001), Zn (P < 0.001), Cu (P < 0.001) and Mn (P = 0.003). With increasing feeding intensity (low, medium, high) the daily deposition of these trace elements increased (4.4, 5.2, 6.6 mg/day for Fe; 4.9, 5.5, 6.9 mg/day for Zn; 0.20, 0.36, 0.44 mg/day for Cu; 0.14, 0.16, 0.21 mg/day for Mn). Heavier final BW led to increased daily retention of Zn (P < 0.001) and Mn (P = 0.002). Gender had a marked influence only on the accretion rate for Zn (P < 0.001). Ram lambs had a higher daily deposition of this element than female lambs. Related to 1000 g empty body gain, the following concentrations were found for the trace elements examined: Fe 26.1 mg, Zn 30.0 mg, Cu 1.41 mg and Mn 1.04 mg. A feeding influence was given for Zn (P < 0.001) and Cu (P = 0.039). Feeding level low had higher Zn and lower Cu concentrations. Male animals showed less Fe (P < 0.001) and Zn (P = 0.034) per kg empty body gain than females.

DOI: 10.1017/S1751731107000055

5 Figures and Tables

Cite this paper

@article{Bellof2007DepositionOC, title={Deposition of copper, iron, manganese and zinc in the empty body of growing lambs of the breed German Merino Landsheep.}, author={Gerhard Bellof and Josef Pallauf}, journal={Animal : an international journal of animal bioscience}, year={2007}, volume={1 6}, pages={827-34} }