Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining

Edward Clayton, Catherine Gulliver, John Wilkins, Belinda King, R.J. Meyer, Michael Friend

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paper

Abstract

At the time of joining, sheep commonly graze pasture which is high in omega-3 fatty acids. If pasture supply is limited, supplements such as grain that are high in omega-6 fatty acids may be fed. Therefore, the aim of the current paper was to review dietary sources of fatty acids in the diet of sheep in south-east Australia and the contribution of these fatty acids to reproduction and, specifically, the sex of lambs. In a series of studies, Merino x Border Leicester or Merino ewes were allocated to one of two dietary treatments, 100% silage (low in omega-6 and high in omega-3) or 70% oat grain and 8% cottonseed meal (CSM, high in omega-6). In study 1, ewes consumed the diets for 44 days prior to the assessment of the prostaglandin (PGF2α) response to an oxytocin challenge. In studies 2−4, ewes consumed the diets for approximately six weeks prior to and 17 days following joining to assess the effect of diet on the sex ratio of lambs. Plasma omega-6 was higher (P <0.001), PGF2α response to oxytocin was greater (P <0.05), the time to behavioural oestrus was shorter (P =0.006) and the proportion of female lambs was increased (58.2 versus 43.5%, P = 0.010) when ewes were fed the oat grain/CSM compared with the silage diet. Targeted feeding of oats at joining may provide a practical way for producers to manipulate the sex ratio of their flock in favour of females.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDriving Your Landscape to Success
Subtitle of host publicationManaging a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape
EditorsC Harris, G Lodge, C Waters
Place of PublicationOrange, NSW
PublisherThe Grassland Society of NSW Inc.
Pages107-113
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9781742563039
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Event27th Annual Conference of the Grassland Society of NSW Inc.: Driving Your Landscape to Success - Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga , Australia
Duration: 24 Jul 201226 Jul 2012
http://grasslandnsw.com.au/FreeContent/2012/2012_Conference_Prelims.pdf

Conference

Conference27th Annual Conference of the Grassland Society of NSW Inc.
Abbreviated titleManaging a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape
CountryAustralia
CityWagga Wagga
Period24/07/1226/07/12
Internet address

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omega-6 fatty acids
dietary supplements
oats
lambs
ewes
diet
oxytocin
Merino
silage
sex ratio
pastures
Border Leicester
fatty acids
sheep
cottonseed meal
omega-3 fatty acids
prostaglandins
estrus
flocks
gender

Cite this

Clayton, E., Gulliver, C., Wilkins, J., King, B., Meyer, R. J., & Friend, M. (2012). Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining. In C. Harris, G. Lodge, & C. Waters (Eds.), Driving Your Landscape to Success: Managing a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape (pp. 107-113). Orange, NSW: The Grassland Society of NSW Inc..
Clayton, Edward ; Gulliver, Catherine ; Wilkins, John ; King, Belinda ; Meyer, R.J. ; Friend, Michael. / Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining. Driving Your Landscape to Success: Managing a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape. editor / C Harris ; G Lodge ; C Waters. Orange, NSW : The Grassland Society of NSW Inc., 2012. pp. 107-113
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title = "Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining",
abstract = "At the time of joining, sheep commonly graze pasture which is high in omega-3 fatty acids. If pasture supply is limited, supplements such as grain that are high in omega-6 fatty acids may be fed. Therefore, the aim of the current paper was to review dietary sources of fatty acids in the diet of sheep in south-east Australia and the contribution of these fatty acids to reproduction and, specifically, the sex of lambs. In a series of studies, Merino x Border Leicester or Merino ewes were allocated to one of two dietary treatments, 100{\%} silage (low in omega-6 and high in omega-3) or 70{\%} oat grain and 8{\%} cottonseed meal (CSM, high in omega-6). In study 1, ewes consumed the diets for 44 days prior to the assessment of the prostaglandin (PGF2α) response to an oxytocin challenge. In studies 2−4, ewes consumed the diets for approximately six weeks prior to and 17 days following joining to assess the effect of diet on the sex ratio of lambs. Plasma omega-6 was higher (P <0.001), PGF2α response to oxytocin was greater (P <0.05), the time to behavioural oestrus was shorter (P =0.006) and the proportion of female lambs was increased (58.2 versus 43.5{\%}, P = 0.010) when ewes were fed the oat grain/CSM compared with the silage diet. Targeted feeding of oats at joining may provide a practical way for producers to manipulate the sex ratio of their flock in favour of females.",
author = "Edward Clayton and Catherine Gulliver and John Wilkins and Belinda King and R.J. Meyer and Michael Friend",
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Clayton, E, Gulliver, C, Wilkins, J, King, B, Meyer, RJ & Friend, M 2012, Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining. in C Harris, G Lodge & C Waters (eds), Driving Your Landscape to Success: Managing a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape. The Grassland Society of NSW Inc., Orange, NSW, pp. 107-113, 27th Annual Conference of the Grassland Society of NSW Inc., Wagga Wagga , Australia, 24/07/12.

Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining. / Clayton, Edward; Gulliver, Catherine; Wilkins, John; King, Belinda; Meyer, R.J.; Friend, Michael.

Driving Your Landscape to Success: Managing a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape. ed. / C Harris; G Lodge; C Waters. Orange, NSW : The Grassland Society of NSW Inc., 2012. p. 107-113.

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paper

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AU - Friend, Michael

PY - 2012

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N2 - At the time of joining, sheep commonly graze pasture which is high in omega-3 fatty acids. If pasture supply is limited, supplements such as grain that are high in omega-6 fatty acids may be fed. Therefore, the aim of the current paper was to review dietary sources of fatty acids in the diet of sheep in south-east Australia and the contribution of these fatty acids to reproduction and, specifically, the sex of lambs. In a series of studies, Merino x Border Leicester or Merino ewes were allocated to one of two dietary treatments, 100% silage (low in omega-6 and high in omega-3) or 70% oat grain and 8% cottonseed meal (CSM, high in omega-6). In study 1, ewes consumed the diets for 44 days prior to the assessment of the prostaglandin (PGF2α) response to an oxytocin challenge. In studies 2−4, ewes consumed the diets for approximately six weeks prior to and 17 days following joining to assess the effect of diet on the sex ratio of lambs. Plasma omega-6 was higher (P <0.001), PGF2α response to oxytocin was greater (P <0.05), the time to behavioural oestrus was shorter (P =0.006) and the proportion of female lambs was increased (58.2 versus 43.5%, P = 0.010) when ewes were fed the oat grain/CSM compared with the silage diet. Targeted feeding of oats at joining may provide a practical way for producers to manipulate the sex ratio of their flock in favour of females.

AB - At the time of joining, sheep commonly graze pasture which is high in omega-3 fatty acids. If pasture supply is limited, supplements such as grain that are high in omega-6 fatty acids may be fed. Therefore, the aim of the current paper was to review dietary sources of fatty acids in the diet of sheep in south-east Australia and the contribution of these fatty acids to reproduction and, specifically, the sex of lambs. In a series of studies, Merino x Border Leicester or Merino ewes were allocated to one of two dietary treatments, 100% silage (low in omega-6 and high in omega-3) or 70% oat grain and 8% cottonseed meal (CSM, high in omega-6). In study 1, ewes consumed the diets for 44 days prior to the assessment of the prostaglandin (PGF2α) response to an oxytocin challenge. In studies 2−4, ewes consumed the diets for approximately six weeks prior to and 17 days following joining to assess the effect of diet on the sex ratio of lambs. Plasma omega-6 was higher (P <0.001), PGF2α response to oxytocin was greater (P <0.05), the time to behavioural oestrus was shorter (P =0.006) and the proportion of female lambs was increased (58.2 versus 43.5%, P = 0.010) when ewes were fed the oat grain/CSM compared with the silage diet. Targeted feeding of oats at joining may provide a practical way for producers to manipulate the sex ratio of their flock in favour of females.

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PB - The Grassland Society of NSW Inc.

CY - Orange, NSW

ER -

Clayton E, Gulliver C, Wilkins J, King B, Meyer RJ, Friend M. Increasing the proportion of female lambs by supplementary feeding oats high in omega-6 fatty acids at joining. In Harris C, Lodge G, Waters C, editors, Driving Your Landscape to Success: Managing a Grazing Business for Profit in the Agricultural Landscape. Orange, NSW: The Grassland Society of NSW Inc. 2012. p. 107-113