Effect of space allowance during transport on the ...

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Title Effect of space allowance during transport on the behavioural and physiological responses of lambs during and after transport
Author(s) M. S. Cockram, J. E. Kent, P. J. Goddard, N. K. Waran, I. M. McGilp, R. E. Jackson, G. M. Muwanga, S. Prytherch
Journal Animal Science
Date 1996
Volume 62
Issue 3
Start page 461
End page 477
Abstract Behavioural observations and physiological measurements were made on weaned lambs (35 kg) before, during and either after stationary confinement or transport for 12 h at 4 space allowances (0.22, 0.27, 0.31 and 0.41 m²/sheep). Two groups were not loaded (a control group with access to food anf water, and a group with no food or water for 12 h). During the confinement and transport period, the proportion of scans spent lying or ruminating were significantly less than than before treatment (P0.05). Under these experimental conditions, sheep with a live weight of 35 kg can be transported for 12 h at space allowances of between 0.22 and 0.41 m²/sheep without major physiological changes indicating injury or dehydration. The sheep appeared to be hungry after 12 h without food and showed a cortisol and heart rate reponse to transport, indicating that some aspect of transport was acting as a stressor. A space allowance of 0.22 m²/sheep cannot be recommended for 35 kg sheep as there is insufficient space for most sheep to lie down during transport. A space allowance of 0.27 m²/ sheep does allow most sheep sufficient space to lie down.

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