Determination of the optimum contribution of Brahman genetics in an Angus-Brahman multibreed herd for regulation of body temperature during hot weather


DİKMEN S., Mateescu R. G. , Elzo M. A. , Hansen P. J.

JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE, vol.96, no.6, pp.2175-2183, 2018 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 96 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1093/jas/sky133
  • Journal Name: JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded, Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.2175-2183
  • Keywords: heat stress, thermoregulation, body temperature, cattle, Angus, Brahman, LACTATING HOLSTEIN COWS, HEAT TOLERANCE, CARCASS TRAITS, TROPICAL ENVIRONMENT, POSTWEANING GROWTH, FEEDLOT CATTLE, DAIRY-COWS, HEIFERS, SHADE, PERFORMANCE

Abstract

The objective was to evaluate the influence of varying amounts of Brahman genetics on body temperature under pasture conditions during hot weather. Vaginal temperatures were measured at 5-min intervals for 3 to 5 d on four occasions during August and September from a total of 190 pregnant cows that were either Angus, 2/8 Brahman (remainder Angus), Brangus (3/8 Brahman), 4/8 Brahman, 6/8 Brahman or Brahman. Vaginal temperature was higher for the first two replicates than for the second two replicates. In the first two replicates, average vaginal temperature did not differ between genetic groups, but average vaginal temperature from 1500 to 1900 h was lower for Brahman than other groups. In the second two replicates, average vaginal temperature was lower for cows that were 4/8 or higher Brahman than for cows that were 2/8 Brahman or Angus. Average vaginal temperature from 1500 to 1900 h was lower for cows that were 4/8 or higher Brahman than for cows that were 2/8 Brahman or Angus. In addition, Brahman cows had lower vaginal temperatures than cows that were 4/8 Brahman or 3/8 Brahman (i.e., Brangus). In one replicate, a tracking device was used to map cow location. At 1200 to 1300 h, cows that were 6/8 Brahman or Brahman had fewer observations near the tree line (i.e., in shade) than cows that were 4/8 Brahman or less. At 1500 to 1600 h, cows that were 4/8 or higher Brahman experienced fewer observations near the tree line than cows that contained a lower fraction of Brahman genetics. In summary, a minimum of 4/8 Brahman genetics was required to increase the ability to regulate body temperature and at least 6/8 Brahman when heat stress was severe. It is likely, therefore, that using Brahman genetics to optimize adaptation to thermal stress under conditions of severe heat stress requires a preponderance of Brahman genes.