The effect of treatment with melatonin (Regulin(r)) implants on spring down growth, oestrus and conception rates was examined in dry does (n=84), while the effect of this treatment on down growth, lactation and kid growth rates was examined lactating does (n=109). Treated does were implanted 3 times at 8 weekly intervals starting in early September. The animals were shorn and fleeces sampled on 26 January. Regulin(r) melatonin treatment increased down weight by 43%, 92% and 88% in dry hoggets, dry mixed-age and lactating mixed-age does, respectively, and increased down diameter by 6%, 2% and 4% and total fleece weight by 22%, 29% and 30% respectively. The down weight of the untreated lactating does (12.3g) was half that of the untreated dry does (24.3g). The lactating mixed-age does kidded from 30 August to 29 September, 4 does kidded before the first implant. Regulin(r) treatment had no effect on the appearance of milk secretions or the weaning weight of kids. Fertile bucks were joined from 6 October to 20 October and from 24 November to 8 December to the dry does. There was 1 mating mark and pregnancy in the treated does in the first joining period and no mating marks in either groups in the second period.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 49, , 11-14, 1989
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